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 Unable To Afford Medical Supplies, Middle-income Americans Becoming Medical Tourists
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Posted on 06-07-19 12:31 PM     Reply [Subscribe]
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She payed approximately US$300 in Ontario, Canada; the same amount of insulin in the U.S. would cost her around US$3,300.


 A self-described “caravan of Americans” with Type 1 diabetes travelled into Canada over the weekend to get dramatically cheaper, life-saving insulin. And they say this won’t be the last time they cross the border.


"We're on a #CaravanToCanada because the USA charges astronomical prices for insulin that most people can't afford," tweeted diabetes advocate Quinn Nystrom, who documented the group’s trip online.

On Saturday morning, a group of six Minnesotans -- including parents going on their children’s behalf -- drove 1,000 km to get to a Shoppers Drug Mart in Fort Frances, Ontario.

 Nystrom told CTVNews.ca that in Canada, she bought the “same, exact” medication -- used to regulate her blood glucose levels -- at essentially a tenth of what it would cost in the U.S.

“We got so much interest about this and so many people -- who haven't gone before -- now want to go because the insulin was 10 times cheaper in Canada,” Nystrom said in a phone interview. “So we want to go back.”

She ended up paying approximately US$300 in Ontario; the same amount of insulin in the U.S. would have cost her around US$3,300. “It was such huge discrepancy in cost with just a five-hour drive -- it was really quite crazy,” she said.

Among the caravan was Nicole Smith Holt, whose 26-year-old son, Alec Smith, died because the high price of insulin in the U.S. caused him to ration his supply.

“Alec would still be here today if I had known that I could come to Canada,” Smith Holt said. Nystrom said everyone saved significant amounts of money -- despite what they paid for lodging, gas and food.

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