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Port Of Entry Podcast: Crossing The Border For More Affordable Insulin

In this photo taken in January 2020, a San Diego woman crosses back from Tiju...

Photo by Kinsee Morlan

Above: In this photo taken in January 2020, a San Diego woman crosses back from Tijuana to San Diego after buying more affordable insulin at a pharmacy in Tijuana.

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We’re continuing our series on medical tourism at the border with a story about two women and their journeys to find more affordable insulin in Tijuana.

It’s really a ... Read more →

Aired: May 12, 2021 | Transcript

Liz Salcido has Type 2 diabetes. She needs insulin daily, just to survive.

But sometimes, when money is tight, she’s had to ration the life-saving drug.

“We had to make a choice, pay this bill or buy the insulin,” Salcido said. “So, I've struggled in the last few years because of the high cost of health insurance and sometimes I'm without insurance and so I don't have my medications.”

Eventually, the Chula Vista grandma realized she could just cross the border and buy more affordable insulin in Tijuana.

But that solution stopped being an option when the pandemic hit last year. People with diabetes are considered high-risk when it comes to COVID-19, so Salcido found herself too afraid to cross the border. So, she ended up having to ration insulin again.

In a new episode of “Port of Entry,” we continue our series on medical tourism with a story about Salcido and another San Diego woman who go on a journey to find more affordable insulin across the border in Tijuana.

It’s really a story about the fine line between life and death; the balancing act people with diabetes have to navigate every single day; and how crossing the border can be a life raft for those who can’t afford high drug prices in the U.S.

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Photo of Kinsee Morlan

Kinsee Morlan
Podcast Producer & Project Coordinator

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI'm the producer of KPBS' "Port of Entry" podcast, and I help manage the rest of the station's podcasts. Leave a question below or call in or text your question to (619) 452-0228‬.

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