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SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Senate today approved an initiative to rein in the soaring cost of insulin for diabetes patients.

Senate Bill 667, sponsored by State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill), would cap co-payments for insulin at $100 per month for all patients regardless of the supply they require. The cap would only apply to commercial insurance plans regulated by the state.

“Illinois families deserve to have the peace of mind that comes with knowing their loved ones do not have to choose between putting food on the table and buying their prescription medication,” Manar said. “The Senate just took a step toward making that a reality.”

The price of insulin has drastically increased in the United States in the past several years. According to a 2016 analysis, the price of the drug tripled between 2002 and 2013.

1.3 million Illinoisans are living with diabetes and rely on insulin to manage their blood sugar levels. Price increases have left many of them struggling to pay for the drug and at risk of deadly consequences.

According to a study by the Yale School of Medicine, one in four patients with diabetes are forced to ration their insulin due to soaring costs.

“For over a million Illinois residents, insulin is an absolute necessity. Without it, they will die,” Manar said. “Pharmaceutical companies are leveraging that fact in order to maximize profits. It’s time we hold them accountable.”

If it becomes law, the measure would make Illinois the second state in the country to cap insulin payments.

SB 667 now moves to the Illinois House for consideration.

Category: Latest News

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SPRINGFIELD –State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) welcomed the 2019 Pana Solar Car Team to the Illinois State Capitol today to showcase their car and be recognized before the Illinois Senate.

After months of designing and building a roadworthy solar-powered car, the from Pana High School captured a national championship at the 2019 Solar Car Challenge this summer at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth. Led by senior Lucas Duduit, the rest of the four-member team consisted of sophomores Boone Elledge, Jessica Pollman and Katelyn Townsend.

“This team exemplifies just how remarkable and innovative our students can be when given the appropriate tech resources and instruction,” Manar said. “It’s my privilege to welcome them to the Senate.”

Manar presented each member of the team with a congratulatory certificate for their success as national champions on behalf of the Illinois Senate.

Category: Latest News

SPRINGFIELD – An initiative to reign in the soaring cost of insulin for diabetes patients moved forward today.

Senate Bill 667, sponsored by State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill), would cap co-payments for insulin at $100 per month for all patients regardless of the supply they require. The cap would only apply to commercial insurance plans regulated by the state. The legislation was approved 15-3-1 by the Senate Insurance Committee.

“For over a million Illinois residents, insulin is an absolute necessity. Without it, they will die,” Manar said. “Pharmaceutical companies are leveraging that fact in order to maximize profits. It’s time we hold them accountable.”

The price of insulin has drastically increased in the United States in the past several years. According to a 2016 analysis, the price of the drug tripled between 2002 and 2013.

1.3 million Illinoisans are living with diabetes and rely on insulin to manage their blood sugar levels. Price increases have left many of them struggling to pay for the drug and at risk of deadly consequences.

According to a study by the Yale School of Medicine, one in four patients with diabetes are forced to ration their insulin due to soaring.

If passed, the measure would make Illinois the second state in the country to cap insulin payments.

“We’re very pleased with the action of the committee today. This is the first step in the public debate here in the Senate,” Manar said. “Ultimately, it’s important to know that this passed committee because of the individuals around the state that spoke up when this bill was filed because of what’s happening to them and their families due to the skyrocketing costs of insulin. Their voices were heard today.”

Manar expected to present the legislation to the full Senate later this week.

Category: Latest News

IPHCA Legislator of the Year AwardBUNKER HILL – The Illinois Primary Health Care Association (IPHCA) named State Senator Andy Manar its 2019 Community Health Center Champion Wednesday for his work to improve health care for Illinois residents.

“It’s critical that we ensure that every Illinoisan has access to the care they need regardless of factors like income and geography, and I’ve made keeping these services accessible and affordable a major focus of my tenure in the state Senate,” said Manar, a Bunker Hill Democrat. “It’s an honor to be recognized by the IPHCA for those efforts and I want to thank them for selecting me for this award.”

This spring, Manar passed legislation that would impose Illinois’ first ever regulations on pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), which artificially inflate drug costs to increase profit margins. The legislation included several measures aimed at reducing the influence of PBMs, including a provision eliminating the gag clause that prevents pharmacists from suggesting lower cost medications for patients.

The measure was signed into law by Gov. JB Pritzker this summer.

Serving as one of the chief architects of the state’s Fiscal Year 2020 budget, Manar also helped secure $1 million in grants to expand and improve community health centers throughout Illinois. He was the only downstate Democrat charged with negotiating the budget.

“Throughout his tenure in the General Assembly, Senator Andy Manar has demonstrated unwavering commitment to community health centers, and most importantly, the individuals they serve,” said Jordan Powell, President and CEO of the IPHCA. “IPHCA is proud to honor Senator Manar with its Community Health Center Champion Award and we thank him for all of the support that he has provided to our industry.”

Manar is also concerned with the skyrocketing costs associated with insulin, and is currently working on legislation that would bring financial relief to diabetics by capping out of pocket costs for the medication at $100 for a thirty-day supply.

A vote is expected on the legislation when lawmakers return to Springfield in late October.

“I cannot say enough about the support and commitment that Sen. Manar has provided to SIHF Healthcare and IPHCA,” said Larry McCully, President and CEO of SIHF Healthcare, who presented Manar with the award. “He truly understands the health care needs of the area and he takes action to support policies and capital needs that allow our health centers to continue to deliver critical health services.”

Category: Latest News

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