Whitmer signs bipartisan legislation to require insurance to cover emergency insulin supply

LANSING — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer recently signed Senate Bills 155 and 156 to ensure access to emergency insulin supply at a cost affordable to all Michiganders.

The governor also signed House Bills 4055 and 4056 to allow the Michigan Department of Treasury to use overall scholastic achievement to determine eligibility for competitive college scholarships instead of relying exclusively on the ACT and SAT.

These bills acknowledge the challenges that many students have had in accessing standardized tests during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I am committed to bringing Republicans and Democrats together to make real, lasting change for Michigan families,” said Whitmer. “For people living with diabetes, access to insulin is a matter of life and death. I’m proud to sign Senate Bills 155 and 156 because they ensure access to an emergency insulin supply for people facing an interruption of care and require insurance to cover that emergency supply. I’m also proud to sign House Bills 4055 and 4056 – students should be able to afford a college education based on their overall scholastic achievement, especially when facing unprecedented obstacles to taking otherwise required tests like the ACT and SAT.”

Senate Bills 155 allows pharmacists to dispense an emergency supply of insulin to individuals with an expired but otherwise valid prescription issued within the last 12 months. Senate Bill 156 requires insurance to cover an emergency supply of insulin when dispensed under the circumstances outlined in Senate Bill 155.

Senate Bill 155 and Senate Bill 156 were sponsored by Sen. Kevin Daley, R-Lum.

“I am happy to see this legislation reach the finish line and being formally signed into law,” said Daley. “Countless Michiganders need insulin to survive, and they should never be forced into a place where they can’t get their lifesaving medication. My bills would establish a safety net for those who rely on this medication in their daily lives.”

“Your community pharmacist is the most accessible provider of healthcare,” said Sammy Salem of the Arab American Pharmacist Association. “Allowing them to provide insulin when the patient needs it most saves Michigan healthcare costs and Michiganders’ lives.”

House Bill 4055 will amend 1964 PA 208, the state competitive scholarships act, to allow scholastic achievement as an alternative to achieving the requisite score on a standardized test (currently the SAT) for purposes of scholarship eligibility.

House Bill 4055 was sponsored by Rep. Sarah Anthony, D-Lansing.

House Bill 4056 will amend 1966 PA 313, the tuition grant act, to allow undergraduate students enrolled in private colleges and universities for the 2020 spring term and the 2020-21 academic year to have two extra semesters of eligibility for the grant.

House Bill 4056 was sponsored by Rep. Scott VanSingel, R-Grant.

House Bill 4015 would amend the Michigan Consumer Protection Act to require that nonstate entities providing online services similar to those performed by the state include on their websites conspicuous disclosures of the availability of state services and a prominent fee disclosure. It was sponsored by Rep. Sarah Lightner, R-Springport. — G.G.