Rising insulin prices entail rising economic and social costs that are shouldered by all Americans. While three insulin manufacturers cling to their control of the insulin market, consumers are unable to exercise meaningful choices between competitors to drive prices down. When market forces fail, the solution is federal regulation of the insulin market. The failure of typical forces like competition in this market necessitates federal regulation to curb the monopolistic powers of insulin manufacturers. This Comment explores the history and importance of insulin and the current ramifications of exorbitant insulin prices. This Comment then examines different categories of economic regulation and scrutinizes legislation that state governments have begun enacting to regulate insulin prices. Ultimately, this Comment argues that the federal government should implement a combination of price cap regulation and nationalization of insulin formula patents to increase competition and decrease insulin prices, thereby reducing the economic and social burdens borne by Americans.
Erin M. Barker, When Market Forces Fail: The Case for Federal Regulation of Insulin Prices, 42 Campbell L. Rev. 311 (2020).