- Nicole Smith-Holt’s son Alec was found dead on his bedroom floor in Minnesota, only 27 days after losing access to her health insurance plan because he had just turned 26.
- Alec’s official cause of death was ketoacidosis, a complication of type 1 diabetes, but the real cause was his monthly insulin bill of $1,300 and Big Pharma’s greed.
- Minnesota has now passed Alec’s Law, which forces insulin makers to provide a 30 day supply for $35 in emergencies or a 90 day supply for $50 to low-income patients.
Io Dodds from The Independent writes:
“When Nicole Smith-Holt went to confront the bosses of Eli Lilly in May 2018, she had not been an activist for long. Only eleven months earlier, she did not follow politics closely, had not met her congressperson, and would never have imagined breaking down in tears before a vice president of a major US pharmaceutical company.
That was before her son, Alec, was found dead on his bedroom floor in Minnesota, 27 days after losing access to her health insurance plan because he had turned the age of 26. His official cause of death was ketoacidosis, a complication of type 1 diabetes. But the real cause, Ms Smith-Holt told the vice president, was the price of life-saving insulin – $1,300 (£986) per month in Alec’s case – and drugmakers’ “greed”.
“Immediately after Alec’s death, we went through this grieving and feeling so alone,” Ms Smith-Holt, 50, tells The Independent. “I didn’t know anybody else who was in the same situation. It wasn’t until I gave my first interview, a couple of months after Alec passed away, that people started messaging me … it made me feel like Alec’s death was not an isolated situation. It made me open up my eyes that this is a crisis.”
Today, Ms Smith-Holt and her fellow campaigners have dragged America’s sky-high diabetes prices into the public limelight, forcing politicians to take notice…”
See full story here.