House Approves Insulin and Telehealth Legislation
Two health care reform bills designed to cap the monthly cost of diabetes treatment and expand Telehealth services were passed in the House of Representatives. Both bills seek to improve health care for Connecticut residents due to the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.
House Bill 6001, An Act Concerning Telehealth, passed 145 to 0, and the vote for House Bill 6003, An Act Concerning Diabetes and High Deductible Health Plans, was 142 to 4.
An Act Concerning Telehealth (HB 6001) seeks to allow residents with state regulated plans who have grown to rely on Telehealth visits during the COVID-19 pandemic to continue coverage for these services through March 15, 2021.
The bill expands the list of providers who can perform telehealth, ensures that providers will be fairly compensated for telehealth appointments, requires reimbursement for audio-only appointments, and more.
An Act Concerning Diabetes and High Deductible Health Plans (HB 6003) expands on legislation previously debated during the 2020 regular session to cap the cost of insulin and establishes two new programs to ensure access to insulin regardless of income or insurance coverage.
The bill caps the cost of insulin at $25 per month and would implement a monthly cap of $100 on the costs of other supplies related to diabetes, making it the strongest insulin cap in the United States.
It creates an emergency insulin program in which a patient with less than a 7 day supply of insulin can receive 30 days' worth of emergency insulin from any Connecticut pharmacy without a prescription.
In addition, the legislation requires the Department of Social Services commissioner to expand the state’s 340B Program, which offers discount prescription drugs through Federally Qualified Health Centers to residents who don't qualify for Medicaid and are unable to afford a plan that makes diabetes treatment affordable.