On Thursday, CVS Health announced it would be selling a generic version of an EpiPen to combat rising prices in the pharmaceutical industry. CVS Health’s announcement comes as many have voiced their concerns over rising drug prices. Critics include Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders, who not-so-subtly compared drug companies to murderers.
As we’ve seen from Martin Shkreli (during his former Turing Pharmaceutical tenure), some companies don’t mind pumping up the price of drugs to make a profit. In August, Mylan Pharmaceuticals stoked controversy when it raised the price of its EpiPen from $56 to $365. The fallout was swift, as people criticized the pharmaceutical giant’s decision, which earnied them a sternly worded message from Hillary Clinton. Mylan heard those complaints and issued a cheaper EpiPen, albeit at a $300 price.
CVS is hoping to make buying an EpiPen less financially burdensome with a generic version of the Impax Laboratories EpiPen. The new two-pack will be priced at $109.99, which is a bit of a discount from Mylan’s option. USA Today notes how competition between retail pharmacies (particularly regarding the role of pharmacy benefit managers) may have contributed to the EpiPen’s uptick, but CVS looks to be working on improving the situation.
The discussion over rising drug prices has been an ongoing topic, but it has gained more traction recently with comments from Trump. He suggested that it’s time to change the industries’ patent monopolies, something Bernie Sanders actually agreed with.
(Via USA Today)