Page 8 God Bless America Chisholm Trail Community News WWW.CHISHOLMTRAILNEWS.COM April 21, 2021 SAVE 7 DAYS AWEEK Mon - Sat 10 - 7 Sun 1 - 6 3420 S 4th CHICKASHA 405-825-3510 25% OFF Big Bold TAG SALE NEVER PAY RETAIL AGAIN! Fair and Biased A conservative view of national state and local politics by Steve Fair Chairman, 4th District Oklahom Republican Party INSULIN & PROFITEERING! More than 200,000 Oklahoma adults suffer from type 1 diabetes, including my wife. Diagnosed at age ten, she has lived with the disease for 59 years. Type 1 diabetics requires daily usage of insulin. Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in Oklahoma. Oklahoma has the fourth highest age-adjusted diabetes death rate in the nation. Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness, amputation, heart disease, kidney failure and early death. Sen. Frank Simpson, (R-Ardmore) and Rep. Randy Worthen, (R-Lawton) authored House Bill #1019, which passed the Senate last week 32-15. It passed the House 94-2. Simpson’s granddaughter lost her life to complications related to Type 1 diabetes and he is passionate about helping diabetics. The bill now heads to the governor’s desk where it is expected to be signed. Three observations: First, a recent U.S. Senate report found the current convoluted drug pricing system drives price increas- es. The report from the offices of Sen. Chuck Grassley, (R-Iowa) and Sen. Ron Wyden, (D- Ore) found Novo Nordisk and Sanofi, the two largest insulin producers in America, closely monitored each others pric- ing and matched or topped any increase within hours or days of each other. In other words- price fixing. The two Senators introduced legislation aimed at capping seniors out of pocket costs for drugs covered by Medicare. It would also limit price increases on a drug to the rate of inflation. It did not get a floor vote, because many Republicans oppose it because they feel the bill is too regulatory and goes against a free mar- ket. “There is clearly something broken when a product like insulin that has been on the market longer than most people have been alive skyrockets in price,” Grassley said. Second, the report blamed pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) as part of the reason for the high prices for insulin. These middlemen negotiate with drug companies on behalf of insurance plans, large employ- ers and other payers for discounts. PMB’s decide if a certain drug will be covered by a plan. Drug makers offering large rebates have a better chance of being covered by a health plan. PBMs charge fees and paid a percentage of rebate based on the drug’s ‘list’ price. Insulin producers are thereby incentivized to increase the price so PBMs can get larger rebates. “This industry is anything but a free market when PBMs spur drug makers to hike list prices in order to greater rebates and fees,” Grassley said. Third, there is a reason insulin is so expensive? Here are the main three: (1) Only three companies con- trol 90% of the insulin market worldwide. In the past 15 years, the price of insulin has tripled and the three producers raise prices together. We need more insulin producers in the U.S. to bring the price down. (2) There is no generic insulin. Insulin is a biologic rather than chemical. It can’t be produced generic in the same way as other drug. Creating a generic insulin costs nearly as much as making a new drug. Because of that cost, the few insulin generics available cost just 10-15% less than the branded product. (3) The ‘ever- greening’ of the patents on insulin are loopholes in the patent system. They allow insulin producers to keep patents longer than the normal 20-year period. For example, Sanofi, the maker of Lantus has created the potential for a competition free monopoly for 37 years. If signed by the governor, HB#1019 will cap the price in Oklahoma for a 30-day supply of insulin to $30 for each covered prescription. Several other states have passed similar legislation. HB#1019 will not only save many diabetics money, but it could save their life. Steve Fair is Chairman of the 4th district of the Oklahoma Republican Party. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org . His blog is stevefair.blogspot.com . Elizabeth ‘Ellie’ Skahill is Ameri- can Born with a Hispanic Back- ground. She is specializing in helping Hispanic Business Owners and others with their Advertising and Marketing. She has skills as photographer for a local TV Station and can help anyone with their Advertising. As a Specialist for the Chisholm Trail News and the Washita Valley Community News, she can help you reach More People for Less Money than Anyone. Call her Today and Learn how to be in 27,000 homes next week! “Llegamos a más personas por menos dinero que nadie” “We Reach More People for Less Money than Anyone” Call Her at 580-475-6675 or 405-224-7467/580-255-2428 Parker marks second anniversary as Shelter agent Delaine Parker is celebrating her second anniver- sary as an agent for Shelter Insurance at her Duncan office located next to the Duncan Post Office at 822 West Willow. Delaine invites all of her customers, friends and potential customers to drop by for a meet and greet on Thursday from 11 am to 1 pm for ice cream, cook- ies and give-a-ways next Wednesday, the 28th. Delaine got into Insurance as way to help people. By helping people choose the right coverage for their home, autos, business and even life, she can help people survive those road bumps in life that can hap- pen suddenly and unexpectedly. Delaine was born in Texas but was raised in Eu- rope. She and her veterinarian husband, Dr. Gene Parker have three children and two grandchildren which they support through attending school and sports events. When the chores are done on the family farm, fish- ing and hunting and just living the country life fills her extra time. Come meet Delaine and congratulate her on her two year anniversay with Shelter Insurance on Thurs- day April 28.