CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – City Councilman Richard Garrett, whose 10-year-old son, Trevon, was diagnosed with diabetes and requires daily insulin injections, is inviting citizens to sign an online petition supporting measures to keep insulin affordable for patients and families.
“We are fortunate to have good health insurance to cover the expensive cost of insulin and other diabetic-related supplies, but that’s not the case for many Tennesseans,” Garrett said.
Garrett’s Online Petition is asking for fair pricing for insulin and for a state law that would cap what a diabetic must spend monthly on the medication they need.
State Rep. Jason Hodges, D-Clarksville, also is working on the insulin cost issue.
“I sat down with Commerce and other departments in Nashville this week, looking at options,” Hodges said. “Laws passed in other states might not work here, but I am working on legislation to help control the cost of insulin.”
According to the federal Centers for Disease Control, Type 1 diabetes accounts for about 5 percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. It is an autoimmune condition in which the body attacks and destroys the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas. Because their bodies cannot make enough, Type 1 diabetics are prescribed insulin.
The price of insulin has increased sharply in recent years, and health-care analysts have said the rising prices appear to have little to do with increased production costs. Because of the high costs, many diabetics are forced to ration their insulin, or choose between insulin and other necessities such as food and shelter.
“I’m grateful for State Rep. Jason Hodges’ willingness to work on this issue in the House,” Garrett said. “Colorado recently passed an insulin price cap of $100 per month. It’s time for Tennessee to approve a price cap on this life-saving drug.”
To sign and share the petition, visit http://chng.it/cwrghgY8.
Trevon Garrett, 10, self-administers a daily dose of insulin.