Michiganders turning up heat on drug manufacturers

by

comment
It is estimated that one in three people in Michigan is not taking prescribed medications because they can’t afford it. - ADOBESTOCK
  • AdobeStock
  • It is estimated that one in three people in Michigan is not taking prescribed medications because they can’t afford it.

People in Michigan troubled by the high cost of prescription medications are encouraged to help turn up the heat on drug manufacturers.

AARP Michigan is hosting a Stop Rx Greed rally on Monday along the Detroit River to spread awareness about the problem and call for solutions.



Mark Hornbeck, associate state director for communications with AARP Michigan, says folks from all over the state leave the country to purchase prescription medications at one-tenth of the cost.

"Michiganders shouldn't have to drive or take a bus to Canada to buy affordable prescription drugs," he states. "And people are especially outraged by the fact that Americans are paying by far the highest drug prices in the world."



According to AARP, the annual cost of prescription drug treatment rose 57 percent between 2012 and 2017, while annual incomes in Michigan increased only 10 percent.

Some local leaders and legislators, including state Sen. Ruth Johnson, will be on hand at the rally.

The Holly Republican will speak about legislation she's sponsoring (SB 525) that would establish a Canadian drug importation program.

State lawmakers also are considering measures that lower out-of-pocket costs for prescription medications and hold companies accountable for price gouging.

Michiganders at the rally also will share their personal stories about how the rising price of drugs has impacted their lives.

Hornbeck says, for example, a Howell woman will talk about how her insulin skyrocketed from $21 a month to $400 in just two years' time.

"Her husband has had to postpone retirement so that they can continue to afford the prescription drugs she needs," Hornbeck relates. "This is a lifesaving drug. She doesn't have an option of whether or not to take it. It's stories like this that we're hearing everywhere."

It is estimated that one in three people in Michigan are not taking prescribed medications because they can't afford it.

Monday's rally will be held from 11 a.m. to noon at the Waterview Loft in Detroit. Register online at aarp.org/MI.

Stay on top of Detroit news and views. Sign up for our weekly issue newsletter delivered each Wednesday.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at letters@metrotimes.com.

Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.