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Colorado Congresswoman Fights For More Transparency On Insulin Prices

DENVER (CBS4) - A new report on the cost of insulin could prompt action in Congress. The price doubled in the last six years despite the drug being around for decades.

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Colorado Congresswoman Diana DeGette is the co-chair of the Congressional Diabetes Caucus. She launched a year long investigation into the price increase.

She says it's not only drug companies, but wholesalers, pharmacies and pharmacy managers who negotiate prices for insurers who are driving the cost increase.

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(credit: CBS)

"It's really easy to blame the pharmaceutical companies and say your list price is too high, but in fact it's the whole system that's become really opaque, and people can't see how everybody is getting their profit. We just need to shine the light on it. We need to figure out how they're doing their pricing. Then we need to figure out a better way for the ultimate beneficiary which is the consumer," DeGette said.

She says another reason for the price increase is the lack of generics. There are only three makers of insulin and she says they've blocked generics from being made.

DeGette helped author a report that recommends more transparency in pricing.

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