Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Wait Three Years for that Shot

It's been a while since I mentioned the unconscionable price of EpiPens (here and here). Well, there's some good news on that front: A new product, Abiliject, is in the works that will compete with EpiPen and have a longer shelf-life.

Abiliject isn't subject to the patent that protects EpiPens because Abiliject stores the epinephrine as a powder, which is reconstituted in seconds when needed. Storing the drug in dry form is what increases the shelf life.

The only problem: it's not due out until 2018, so lots of people can get ripped off or even die in the meantime.

And I wonder what Abiliject will sell for? Seems like it could actually be more expensive. But -- I hope -- its presence in the market will drive down the EpiPen price, if nothing else.

1 comment:

Gina said...

Don't count on it driving down the price, at least not right away. Big Pharma doesn't operate by normal market forces, it seems. For example, when I was on Humira the first time in 2007, each pre-loaded pen syringe cost about $800. It made me paranoid because my insurance would cover a replacement if I made a mistake injecting. When I returned to Humira in 2013, the cost per pen syringe was $1500. I challenged the cost, even though I was not paying my insurance covered it, and asked the manufacturer why the price had gone UP instead of down. They never provided me with an answer. I've seen this trend with other drugs. Instead of going down, as with other products in the marketplace, drug prices increase.