Kettering diabetic on insulin prices: ‘I’m getting gouged’

1:05 p.m Monday, Feb. 6, 2017 Local
Tim Rau holds up reciepts for his insulin, which increased in price nearly 60 percent in just one year. KATIE WEDELL/STAFF

Tim Rau, 56, of Kettering, has been a diabetic for 15 years and insulin dependent for a decade, but he’s still baffled as to why his Lantus prescription costs so much, can change in price so quickly, and costs a different amount at every pharmacy.

He’s one of millions of Americans trying to navigate the world of rising drug prices and increasingly looking to coupons and discount cards for some relief.

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In early 2015 Rau paid about $1,250 for a 90-day supply of the insulin; by the next year the same prescription was $1,986 — a nearly 60 percent increase.

The insulin he needs to live has driven him into credit card debt and he’s had to borrow money from his parents.

“Here I am the little guy and I’m getting gouged,” Rau said.

IN-DEPTH REPORT: Consumers kept in the dark over drug pricing

Irate over the unexplained price hikes he went online and found the same drug for $750 through the online discount site BlinkHealth.com.

But as with many of the coupon options available, there was a catch. In order to get the discount price, consumers must purchase their drugs outside of insurance. The consumer pays less out-of-pocket, but the money doesn’t count toward any insurance deductibles.

For more on the true cost of prescription drug discounts and how to get the best deal, click here: Drug coupons can come with a catch.

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