NY state attorney general will probe maker of EpiPens

Rising drug prices put pharmaceutical industry's lobbying to the test

The company, which has been under fire for hiking the price of the epinephrine autoinjector, is being investigated for possibly inserting anticompetitive terms into its sales contracts with school systems, Schneiderman’s office said Tuesday.

Mylan’s EpiPen is the predominant epinephrine autoinjector-a device and drug used in cases where an individual suffers a severe allergic reaction, which could otherwise lead to death-in the US market.

Mylan says middlemen and suppliers have forced them to jack-up the prices on EpiPens by hundreds of dollars, but two industry insiders say the company pays no more than $30 per device. Mylan recently announced it now will provide a generic device at half the cost.

The drugmaker previously offered to sell schools additional injectors beyond those provided for free under the program, but that “such restriction no longer remains”, the Mylan spokeswoman said. In almost 1,000 cases recorded of an auto-injector being used in the 2013-2014 school year, the company says its product was used 48.7 percent of the time.

Mylan’s (MYL) stock price target was cut to $48 from $52 at RBC Capital Markets on Tuesday. “We’ve contacted Mylan to ask for a more comprehensive explanation for the price increase on EpiPens, because their public statements to date have fallen short”.

The recent news that Mylan Pharmaceuticals has escalated the price of this medication almost 450 percent in the years since it took over production – from $50 for one injector to $600 for a pack of two – is outrageous.

Meanwhile the compensation of Mylan CEO Heather Bresch skyrocketed from $2.45 million in 2007 to $18.9 million – a 671 percent increase.

McCaskill is the top Democrat on the Senate Special Committee on Aging.

Mylan denied Schneiderman’s claims in a statement, saying its contracts with local school do not include purchase requirements and its EpiPen4Schools program has provided more than 700,000 free injectors to 65,000 schools.

The auto-injector, the part of the EpiPen that enables users to give themselves a shot of epinephrine, costs $3 to $7, Baum added.

Democratic Missouri U.S. Sen.

Aging Committee Chairwoman Susan Collins of ME said in an interview Tuesday she wasn’t sure a hearing would be necessary.