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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SPRINGFIELD — Communities in State Senator Andy Manar’s (D-Bunker Hill) district will see more than $357 million in funding for road and bridge projects over the next six years as part of the Illinois Department of Transportation’s (IDOT) Multi-Year Improvement Program announced Monday in Springfield.

Senator Manar joined Governor Pritzker, IDOT officials and other state leaders Monday afternoon to unveil the details of IDOT’s Multi-Year Plan, which marks a historic investment in Illinois infrastructure and is the centerpiece of Gov. Pritzker’s Rebuild Illinois plan.

Manar led negotiation efforts on the capital infrastructure bill on behalf of the Illinois Senate Democratic Caucus.

“Ultimately, this was a cooperative effort between Democrats and Republicans, between business and labor, and between individual members of the legislature from every part of the state,” Manar said. “Today’s announcement would not have been possible without the leadership of Governor Pritzker and Secretary Osman, and the expertise of the IDOT staff.”

The capital infrastructure plan, which will invest $23.5 billion in improving and expanding roads and bridges statewide, is more than double the size of the previous year’s Multi-Year Plan. Projects outlined in the plan will cover 4,212 miles of roadway and 9.2 million square feet of bridge deck statewide over the next six years.

“Beyond repairing roads and fixing bridges that are in desperate need of repair, this bill, Rebuild Illinois, outlined by today’s Multi-Year Plan is going to put thousands of people to work across all parts of Illinois. This helps every corner of our state’s economy,” Manar said. “This is a sustainable program that’s going to be paying dividends to the people of this state for years to come.”

The $357 million investment in Senate District 48 will cover 110 infrastructure projects over the next six years. Seventeen of the 110 projects are set to begin in 2020.

A complete list of upcoming projects in Manar’s district can be found here.

Category: Latest News

Pharmacy Award

(Pictured are pharmacists Lauren Young from Dale’s Southlake Pharmacy, which operates in Decatur and the surrounding area, Dave Faulk, who operates Sav-Mor Pharmacies, and Byron Barry from Pharmacy Plus, which operates in Girard and several other locations.)

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Pharmacists Association honored State Senator Andy Manar last week with its Honorary Co-President Award for his work on behalf of local pharmacists in Illinois.  Manar has ushered through legislation that has positively impacted pharmacies in rural and underserved communities.

“The rising costs associated with prescription medication are hurting consumers and pharmacists alike, and that’s why I’ve focused on doing everything I can to protect Illinoisans from out of control drug expenses and keeping local, independent pharmacists in business,” said Manar, a Bunker Hill Democrat. “It’s an honor to be recognized for that work and I want to thank the Illinois Pharmacists Association for selecting me for this award.”

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Category: Latest News

Insulin Costs in IL

School Funding Reform

 

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Springfield Office:
119A Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
Phone: (217) 782-0228

Decatur Office:
Macon County Office Building
141 S. Main St., Suite 502
Decatur, IL 62523
Phone: (217) 429-8110

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Phone: (618) 585-4848