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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Dale Lueck (R)

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Legislative update

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Dear Neighbor,

Several new laws take effect July 1 in Minnesota. The Alec Smith Insulin Affordability Act allows diabetics with less than a one-week supply of insulin that otherwise do not have access to the drug to receive a 30-day emergency supply from a pharmacy. 

  • To be eligible an individual must:
  • Have a valid prescription for insulin;
  • Be a Minnesota resident;
  • Not be enrolled in medical assistance or MinnesotaCare;
  • Not be enrolled in a prescription drug coverage program that limits the total amount of cost-sharing that the enrollee is required to pay for a 30-day supply of insulin at $75 or less.
  • Not have received an urgent-need supply of insulin through this program within the previous 12 months.

Along with resources already available through medical assistance programs and insulin manufacturers themselves, the law provides an additional safety net for those without appropriate health insurance coverage. A reliable source of insulin is critical; this program is intended to prevent a lack of access from cascading into a life-threatening situation. 

Another new state law requires drug manufactures to begin reporting to the Minnesota Commissioner of Health, large price increases under the “Prescription Drug Price Transparency Act”. In addition to disclosing the manufacturing, marketing and distribution costs, manufacturers must report a variety of other detailed financial information. 

For each prescription drug whose price was $100 or greater for a 30-day supply, or for a treatment lasting less than 30 days, manufacturers must report certain drug pricing information as follows:

  • For brand name drugs price increases of 10 percent or more within the previous 12-month period, or an increase of at least 16 percent over the previous 24-month period;
  • For generic brand drugs an increase of at least 50 percent over a previous 12-month period;
  • The law also establishes manufacturer drug pricing reporting requirements for certain new prescription drugs and newly acquired drugs;
  • Manufacturers failing to comply are subject to a fine of up to $10,000 per day.

Drug cost increases remain a mystery to most of us, this law should help shine a light on what is actually triggering major drug cost increases.  The law becomes effective July 1, with first reports due to the Minnesota Commissioner of Health on Oct. 1, 2021. The Commissioner is required to make the data available to the public.  

Please be safe and enjoy the 4th of July Independence Day holiday. 



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