As lawmakers return to the Minnesota State Capitol wearing masks and practicing social distancing, they managed to pass emergency insulin relief amidst the coronavirus crisis. Families who have lost loved ones worked for more than a year to prevent more deaths.

The parents of Alec Smith, who died in 2017 after rationing his insulin, were on hand to see the bill passed that’s named in honor of their son. It was an emotional moment for Alec’s mother, Nicole Holt-Smith, who could be seen praying during the bill’s passage – and then in a scene we haven’t seen in some time, she embraced the bill’s author with a protective mask on. Democrats and Republicans ultimately came together to find a compromise to stop more deaths from the rationing of the expensive prescription drug.


Earlier this year, Almanac political reporter Mary Lahammer examined the insulin issue through the lens of those who need it most: men, women & kids diagnosed with diabetes. The skyrocketing cost of the drug leaves many to make tough decisions. Read all about how “Life-Saving Insulin Is a Must-Have for Twin Teens.”