Tarleton State University

AbstractIn recent years diabetic people have found it more harder to be able to afford insulin , due to the rising cost of insulins prices. As many people do not know the cost to make an insulin vial is about six to 30 dollars while big pharma company sky rocket the prices from anywhere to six hundred to a thousand dollars. Effective methods have been used to help combat the rising cost of insulin prices such as setting up programs to help those who cant afford to pay it. Its gone as far some to go and cap the price of insulin such as Colorado to cap it at hundred dollars per month for a vial which is still expensive but will help the pricing reduction on the insulin cost.


This issue of the rising cost of insulin argues with the idea of the life course model as it follows all five steps, first being the principle of life span it helps extend the person s life span and well being as it’s a vital aid for their health , the second being the human agency as they will not be able to make any coherent choices if they are unable to get their insulin. The third being the principle of timing if they cant afford the insulin then they can’t receive it and their health and well being degrades. The fourth is linked lives basically is their social networks such as having health insurance and being able to get cheaper insulin and fifth being the time in today society money is what runs everything its what’s keeps you alive to afford the rising cost of insulin.

Areas of public health

This issue falls in the category of policy and management, due to who keeps track and manages the cost of insulin? The big pharma company’s have the hand in the cost of it they don’t care if the person can afford it or not , all they care is profits and creating a supply and demand economy .


I like this issue a lot due to the reason I have family that struggles monthly to buy insulin , they sometimes travel to Mexico and go and buy the insulin which is a lot more cheaper but there is controversy that they insulin there could be ‘fake’ which why I prefer for them to buy it here. But even with their insurance they come out paying around hundred and twenty which is expensive for them. So I would like to make people aware of this issue.

Do you or yourself know someone who is diagnosed with diabetes and wonder to yourself ‘why is the cost of insulin so dang high?’ as studies have shown that insulin in the past years have sky rocketed prices as much as 300$ per vial whereas the insulin pen is almost up to 600$ that’s a lot for a lifesaving drug with this problem it leaves diabetic choosing between purchasing insulin or other necessities, leaving them to long/short term problems as many sometimes are forced to ration off their insulin till the next paycheck. Studies have shown most diabetics are well within the poverty/working class and struggle to buy the insulin. Most health insurances will not cover the insulin due to the fact you are administrating yourself unless you are using the pump , which is usually very expensive and many cannot afford it. The effects the high cost of insulin has on people is many resort to conserving and not using all their insulin which can affect their cognitive thinking this falls in the stages of life course model of public health. With the main idea it follows many steps such as helping the individuals health but when the persons decides to ration it , it affects them negatively secondly affecting their family and friends as they will see decline in their loved ones health and thinking. Third is the environment around them without the proper dose of insulin they will degrade and so will their world around them.How did insulin get so high ? big pharma companies have long stated that there is a ‘low’ insulin supply and the demand for it is high, but its been shown that this is a lie and there is not a low supply of insulin , they are doing this in order to create more profit as the cost production for insulin is around 20$ and over the course of 3 years insulin prices have shot up to 30 percent. They also use major loopholes and exploit health insurance users the general rule is followed as In if you administer yourself chances are it will not be covered by health insurance unless you have the pump which is very costly at times.

Some efforts are being made such as company made for diabetics that cannot afford insulin have made some that is hundred dollars or less and they’ve stated that they want to make it so its available for diabetics that cannot afford it their only true motive is to help out customers so they are not forced to ration it. As stated before insulin prices have been soaring and only for the worse , to profit ways we can change this in the public health industry is make people aware of whats going on and educate the health outcomes this has on diabetics. Many state governments have actually taken action into keeping the cost insulin low such as the state of Colorado which capped the price of insulin at hundred dollars making it one the lowest price of insulin in the states. Alternative efforts in order to get insulin cheaper are being used such as traveling to other country’s where its proven to be cheaper, my aunt is diabetic and struggle’s sometime to pay for her insulin so she has to resort to travel to Mexico to where she knows where she can get it as over there the cost of insulin is half the price of the US but an issue she faces is buying fake insulin which can severely destroy a persons health. And why is that she has to resort to going out of the country? because of the big pharma companies that exploit a health necessity of people for bigger profit gain. Currently they are politicians trying to get bills passed and make it unethical to increase the cost of insulin, it’s a tough battle because they argument is ‘is it ethical or unethical’ in my opinion I would consider it very unethical due to the main fact we are price gouging a necessity that diabetics need in order to survive and function efficient. Its estimated that insulin companies take home around four billion dollars from diabetic users while back then it was at about seven hundred and one million dollars in nineteen nighty one, makes you wonder why would they need to profit of it so much? .Over the last twenty years insulin prices have dramatically increased due to the supply and demand and creating this fake idea of low insulin supply. Which is creating a high demand for it causing major companies to mark up their prices and create a high profit margin . currently we are trying to find new way and methods to keep the cost low .

We the public health can take measurements to ensure this doesn’t proceed to happen in the near future by taking these steps , create programs where we can help struggling diabetics that need help in affording their insulin. Inform state governments of this trending issue and how they can help keep cost low and implement new policies that will ensure there is no loophole or price gouging. This isn’t just about making profits but saving people that need the insulin and make sure they are getting the proper doses they need.

References How Much Difference Will Eli Lilly’s Half-Price Insulin Make? (2019, March 10). Weekend Edition Sunday. Retrieved from

Skipper, N. (2012). On reimbursement reforms and stockpiling of prescription drugs: The case of insulin. Health Policy, 106(3), 233–240.

De Cristofano, F. (2019). PDB39 INSULIN PRICE FLUCTUATION IN THE USA BETWEEN JULY 2017 AND JULY 2019. Value in Health, 22, S579–S579., d., & carter, p. (2011). How small changes led to big profits for insulin manufa. Retrieved from QANDA: INSULIN PRICE INVESTIGATION. (2019, October 25). States News Service, p. NA. Retrieved from