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The Epipen Scandal

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epipen prices onlineIt’s been all over the news and so it should be! Epipen prices in the US are beyond ridiculous. At you can buy a 2 pack of branded Epipens for only $176, compared to in the US where they can cost upwards of $600.

We are not joking! It is the same Epipen product as you buy locally. Exactly the same. Check out the price on GoodRX, compared to the price on IsraelPharm!


What is an Epipen

Epipens are used by people with severe allergies. They safely and quickly allow for epinephrine to be injected into the person suffering from the allergy attack, allowing them extra time to get to a hospital for treatment and allergy reversal. When you suffer from an allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) your airways close up. The Epipen works by opening up the airways and stopping them from closing for a little bit longer. On average it gives the patient up to 15 minutes more time to get to the hospital. This 15 minutes’ delay can be lifesaving. sometimes 1 dose is not enough and you may need to inject a second dose anywhere from 5-15 minutes after the first dose. That is why they now come in a dual pack. Doctors recommend that you carry two pens with you in case of times like this.

It’s such a crucial medication. No person needing such a lifesaving treatment should have to pay these extortionate prices.

Allergic reactions that cause anaphylaxis shocks can happen if you have an allergy to anything from bee stings to severe allergic reactions for foods like peanuts and milk. Anaphylaxis can also happen if you have an allergy to a new medication.


Why is the price of an Epipen so high?

Epien prices used to be as low as $100, but that was a decade ago. Everyone expect inflation and price rises over the years, it’s economics but this rise in the price of Epipens is another example of why prescription drugs and big pharma need to be government regulated.

In Israel the Ministry of Health regulates prices on all prescription medications sold, especially so on essential meds, and this drug is an essential medication. Pharma companies cannot just raise their prices drastically like they can do in the US. There are no true competitors for this drug to force the price back down. The FDA are partially responsible for this lack of competition, thanks to their patent policies and insurance company relationships.

Sometimes drugs are expensive because the active ingredient is expensive or revolutionary or in trial phases. This is not true of the Epipen active ingredient. Epinephrine is cheap and it has been around for a long time. It costs as little as a few cents per dose. The reason for the high cost is down to the auto-inject device that makes Epipens so vital for fast and on-the-spot application. It is patented so any competitor needs to produce their own auto-inject system. This development combined with lots of FDA red tape (it’s notoriously hard to get drugs and application systems approved by the FDA) means Mylan are wide open to exploit prices. Countless attempts at generic auto-injection technologies have been rejected. Pre-filled syringes have even been put forward for approval but these were rejected too. ( Teva, a top Israeli drug manufacturer also tried to get past the FDA earlier this year and also failed, pushing back development of approval of their Teva Eipen application system by at least a year.

It is not easy to please the FDA but in a way, that is fine and expected. They are here after all to ensure the safety of citizens when it comes to food and drugs. However, they also have a moral obligation to get things done, fast, so people do not have to experience these situations. Paying for Epipens can literally break the bank in some households but what are you going to do about? Let your child, wife, husband, brother leave the house without it?

It seems to us that every time someone gets close to shutting this story down and becoming a true competitor, Epipen prices rise once again. In countries like Israel where prices are regulated it has not been possible to have these price hikes. So who is to blame? Everyone from the government, health insurance companies, Mylan and the FDA. There’s no one person the blame, it’s just how it is. That is why reform is needed across the board.

The price of Epipen hit the news last month thanks to the news that the CEO of Mylan has a pay rise of over 600% over the last decade. No coincidence that the price of Epipens rose by 400% during this same period. It was at the start of this period in 2007 that Mylan purchased the rights to Epipen and the auto-inject application. A breakdown of the regulation changes, costs and price hikes over this period of time is outlined here on NBC news Epipen report. It makes an interesting read!

Back to the point – Buy Epipen online for a far more reason price. You can Buy Epipen online for only $176 (2 pack). This is one of those times where buying prescription medication online is worth the cost of shipping and the time it costs to receive it by post.

Please help spread the word….

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