Mylan Pharmaceuticals’ chief executive on Friday called for an overhaul of drug pricing in the U.S., the same day the company said a generic version of the EpiPen will soon be available.
“Pharmaceutical pricing is too far removed from the patient at the pharmacy counter and not designed for today’s increasingly consumerized healthcare system,” CEO Heather Bresch said in a statement. “Every day, escalating out-of-pocket costs impact a new patient population; however, this broader systemic issue will not be solved in a meaningful and sustainable way by our industry’s one-off, reactive responses.”
Mylan said a generic version of the EpiPen will be available in pharmacies as early as next week at a cost of $300 for a two-pack — half the list price of the brand name product. Bresch said the generic version will “help patients and provide substantial savings to payors.”
Mylan faced a wave of scrutiny earlier this year after reports that the list price of EpiPens had risen more than 400 percent since the company acquired the drug in 2007. In August, the company announced plans to offer the generic version, saying at the time it would be rolled out in “several weeks.”
Obama administration officials later revealed that Medicaid programs likely overpaid for EpiPens, as the product was improperly classified as a generic drug.
It’s unclear how Congress might address drug pricing next year. President-elect Donald Trump has indicated he plans to address the issue, and there’s bipartisan interest to find a solution.