Responding to recent ire over a price hike from a list price of $93.88 to $608.81 for an EpiPen two-pack, has Mylan offering some concessions.
- First, they plan to offer $300 copay cards, up from the current $100-a-prescription savings (which is not always available, for instance if you don’t have insurance). See here.
- Second, Mylan said on Monday August 29th it will launch in several weeks a generic EpiPen version that is identical to the branded option but will have a list price of $300 for a two-pack. It will be available in both 0.15-milligram and 0.30-milligram strengths, like the current version on the market.
While this doesn’t answer questions like how little Timmy is going to afford an EpiPen, or why a product that literally costs less than $1 is being sold for hundreds (even with all things considered), it is good to see efforts for companies to take responsibility. Reforming Big Phrama isn’t easy, and certainly they aren’t the only ones profiting off drugs, still… this is something we have to address so any progress is nice to see.Mylan CEO Faces Calls to Explain 400% EpiPen Increase.
FACT: The drug it injects, Epinephrine, has been around since 1901 and the wholesale cost of epinephrine in the developing world is between US$0.10 and US$0.95 a vial. Of course companies need to fund R&D, their staff, turn profit, and such… so its not reasonable to expect a $1 price tag, still, the difference between cost, demand, and what is charged one of the roots of price gouging in any market. When it comes to life saving drugs, the conversation is even more complex.