Why Insulin Is So Expensive and How California Aims to Produce Its Own | WSJ

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California Gov. Gavin Newsom recently announced the state will begin making its own insulin to help lower the cost of the diabetes medication. WSJ explains how insulin got so expensive in the U.S. and explores whether a policy initiative like California’s could succeed in driving down costs.

Photo Illustration: Ryan Trefes

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20 Comments

  1. Roy W-G

    Novo Nordisk makes plenty of money in Europe . The problem is entirely with the Wild West pharmaceutical market in the US. In the U.K. once you are diagnosed with diabetes you NEVER pay for ANY medication ever again.

  2. Lawrence Wood

    The lengths we go to in the US to avoid single payer healthcare blows my mind sometimes

  3. John Palmer

    Insulin costs virtually nothing to make…. all of the cost is virtually ‘manufactured’ for the purpose of creating high profits for all the players in the supply chain… except the endpoint consumer who absorbs all the cost. This is a classic example of tragedy for the commons perverse outcome.

  4. glidercoach

    Wait a minute, President Trump took care of this problem.

    Oh right, President Biden rescinded it.

  5. S.S.S

    Meanwhile in my country, insulin is FREE 🤭 shouldn't take granted after this

  6. Moff Ant

    it's 25$ a bottle at Walmart. R lasts me 3 months N about 5 weeks. it's not that bad.

  7. 007kingifrit

    first exec order biden signed on day 1 in office…..removed the price cap on insulin

  8. interrobangings

    canadian here, insulin isn't actually expensive

  9. Fuzzy

    Reading through these comments is crazy to me as a european, where in my country you can get insulin for free if you need it or at a maximum £10

  10. Joe Joey

    Insurance is the reason healthcare is so expensive
    Student loans are the reason why college is so expensive

  11. Joe Joey

    Knowing how efficiently California handled other problems before it will likely end up costing more

  12. bgregg55

    It's perfectly legal to price gouge in the US because Big Pharma owns much of Capitol Hill.

  13. Curtis Thomas

    People who require insulin remember this: Republicans voted AGAINST a price cap on insulin.

  14. Loretta Carroll

    I get insulin for my cat. For 5 pens that are good for 28 days each it is almost $400.

  15. MemoFromEssex

    Laughs in British 🇬🇧

    (My brother has Type 1)

  16. James Strong

    “California trying to make insulin cheaper”
    Maybe if you actually had free healthcare people could actually afford it.

  17. Evan 2 electric boogaloo

    is that price comparison at the begging including what they pay through their taxes, because if so deer god that is ridiculous

  18. DtWolfwood

    God forbid they would have to accept lower profit MARGIN not enough to make a profit, but a growing profit year over year.

  19. ilichio

    LOL in Mexico you can buy insulin in Walmart at $5usd. That's the problem of being a society highly fed on capitalist propaganda.

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