By Marielle Mohs

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Republican State Representative Jeremy Munson is using Facebook to encourage diabetics to buy over-the-counter insulin for under $25 at Walmart.

WCCO’s Marielle Mohs found out if that’s truly the best and safest option.

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“I walked into this Walmart behind me and purchased the very same vile of insulin without a prescription for $24.88,” Rep. Munson said in a Facebook video.

Munson shared the video over the weekend and it got a heavy amount of criticism.

“National advocates for insulin for all came out and attacked me on Facebook,” Munson said.

Critics are arguing that it’s dangerous to suggest that all diabetics can use the over the counter, cheap insulin option. But a pharmaceutical expert with Allina Health says they can.

Rep. Jeremy Munson (credit: CBS)

“Insulins that are available over the counter are still viable treatment options for patients,” Marcus Arneson with Allina Health Pharmacies said.

However, Arneson says it’s important diabetics know the difference.

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“Traditional insulins require more frequent dosing and they also may require a different monitoring strategy,” Arneson said.

The prescribed, synthetic insulins, which can range anywhere from $600 to $1,000, are preferred by diabetics because they mimic the way a body should release insulin into the bloodstream.

“They can be dosed once or twice a day and give you a … base level of insulin,” Arneson said.

Arneson recommends not making the decision alone.

“Ultimately you want to speak to your doctor,” Arneson said.

Meanwhile, Rep. Munson will continue to spread the word about the cheap Walmart option.

“It should be a viable option for people who are faced with emergency situations,” Munson said.

A house committee will meet on Thursday to talk about emergency insulin options.

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In addition to Walmart, CVS also offers the traditional insulin brand for under $30.

Marielle Mohs