A recent study suggests that out-of-pocket spending on insulin has remained fairly stable with an average cost of $36 in 2006 and $38 in 2017. The only exception is for high deductible insurance plans in which cost increased from $93 to $141 per month over the same time period. Still, monthly out-of-pocket costs for insulin may be difficult for many low-income individuals. The researchers analyzed insurance claims data including more than 612,000 patients with prescriptions for insulin from 50 U.S. states. However, the study included only privately insured patients, not those who were uninsured or those with Medicare or Medicaid coverage. These are the groups most affected by high insulin costs. For example, for Medicare part D beneficiaries, the 30-day out-of-pocket costs for insulin increased from $49 in 2014 to $58 in 2019. The study did not include other costs related to diabetes monitoring, devices for delivering insulin, and clinic visit costs. Living with diabetes remains an expensive condition.
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