NAPNAP staff and the Executive Board have been closely following the important public discussion on the consumer price of the EpiPen Auto-Injector. Mylan has steadily increased the price over the past nine years to where some families of severely allergic children must make difficult, risky choices. Unaffordable prices and limited access are not acceptable when it comes to life-saving emergency treatments. Children must come first.
NAPNAP has expressed the concerns of its members directly to Mylan management. NAPNAP does not condone business practices that put the health of children at risk or take advantage of the healthcare system. Please be assured that we will always act to ensure the health of children and the integrity of pediatric-focused APRNs.
This and other recent controversies about pharmaceutical pricing are symptomatic of complex and systemic issues within our health care delivery system. As a result of these issues, a greater portion of the costs of health care have been shifting to consumers. And those who do not qualify for subsidized care are shouldering a disproportionate portion of this shift. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been slow to respond to requests to authorize generic alternatives to many drugs. In the case of EpiPen, five senators wrote an information request letter this week to the FDA asking some important questions on its process to approve safe, generic alternatives (see link below). According to the New York Times, the still-expensive Adrenaclick is an alternative but can’t be substituted because it is not considered a generic by the FDA (see below link). Adrenaclick must be dispensed as written.
Likewise, Congress could take action on the rising cost of drugs and other life-saving treatments and put policies in place to discourage single source products and encourage more competition. To date, it hasn’t. The congressional inaction is part of the problem. Advocating for change on this and other issues is the best solution to these complex problems. NAPNAP will keep you informed as our advocacy positions are updated and calls to action are announced.
NAPNAP discloses that Mylan is one of its industry sponsors and has funded an education grant.
We welcome your comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NAPNAP President Laura Searcy, MN, APRN, PPCNP-BC
NAPNAP Executive Director Cate Brennan, MBA, CAE