NY attorney general launches antitrust investigation into Epipen manufacturer Mylan


New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced today that his office has launched an antitrust investigation into Mylan Pharmaceuticals, the makers of the EpiPen.

So far, investigators say the pharmaceutical company might have written anti-competitive terms into sales contracts with school districts, meaning school's aren't allowed to purchase a lower cost alternative.

The price has grown to $608 for a two-pack, up more than 500 percent since 2007.

"The EpiPen4Schools program provides free EpiPen Auto-Injectors to US schools, and more than 700,000 free EpiPen Auto-Injectors have been distributed to more than 65,000 participating schools since its inception", the company said in a statement.

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EpiPen4Schools discounted price was $112.10 for schools previous year, according to company documents. Now, nearly a decade later, the price of two auto-injector EpiPens is more than $600, according to prescription drug price tracker GoodRx.

Discount coupons. You should also know that, in response to the outrage over its EpiPen pricing, Mylan has created a coupon savings program so that some customers can get discounts of $300 on each EpiPen two-pack.

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Separately Tuesday, an OH woman filed a proposed class action lawsuit against Mylan in an OH county court, claiming sharp price hikes for the company's EpiPen device violated the state's consumer protection law.

Meanwhile, on Sep 2, Hillary Clinton unveiled a plan to protect consumers from "unjustified price hikes" of prescription drugs, including EpiPen. The move was blasted by members of Congress who called it a public-relations maneuver.

"Providing discounts on the condition that the customer not purchase a competitor's goods is the kind of conduct that can violate the antitrust laws when taken by a monopolist, and in Mylan's case, this may be a direct violation of Section 5", they said.

The probe isn't the first sign of alarm in NY over the EpiPen controversy.

However, in an e-mail, Mylan said that the company has complied with all laws and regulations regarding the Medicaid rebate classification of EpiPen.

"What I do see occurring is Mylan saying consumers are fed up", Lewis said.