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Published 3 years ago with 21 Comments

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  • leweb
    +6

    Of course there is a reason. Greed and government corruption.

  • Qukatt
    +5

    so what you're saying is i should get a heap of (free) epipens here and bring them to the states and sell them for $100 each?

  • sjvn
    +4

    Too true. Epipens are life-savers. Anyone can use one, only someone with experience can use a syringe.

    • Gozzin
      +2

      You don't need much experience. I was taught how to give myself allergy shots in college and millions inject insulin daily.

  • Blabetron (edited 3 years ago)
    +3

    I wonder how insurance companies handle Epipens. Perhaps they are taking the brunt of the cost (although, the money is eventually coming from us anyways). I would think* that they would be covered fairly well by most insurers. The cost of a E.R visit because a person doesn't have one seems more costly.

  • SMcIntyre
    +2

    How about because the company that owns it wants to sell it for $300. Sounds like a perfectly good reason to me. If that price is really too high, then the market will produce alternatives, like it always does, it's basic supply and demand. EpiPen is a brand name, not the medication itself, so there's no reason why another company couldn't develop their own brand if they so choose.

    Everyone remembers when that weaselly little shit from Turing Pharmaceuticals jacked the price of Daraprim up from $13.50 a tablet to $750 a tablet, but what people forget to mention is that because of that, Imprimis released a low-cost alternative for $1 a tablet. So not only do patients not have to pay $750 a tablet, but they're actually paying over 90% less for their medicine than they were before the price was raised.

    • leweb
      +10

      Here's the problem: this is not choosing a tv channel to watch, or a brand of corn chips to buy, this is something that is a matter of life and death for many people. If you're risking dying of an anaphylactic shock every day, you don't really have time to wait for some other company to come and compete. Your argument is very nice for other things, but not for something that is a life or death matter.

      Plus, even if we accepted your argument, the current political system is absolutely anti-competition. Not only the government is doing nothing to ensure that the weak and ill get no protection, but they are actually conspiring to keep the big players in charge and crushing competition, because that brings them "campaign contributions".

      So, as I said, greed and government corruption. Pretty much the source of every single problem in modern western societies, but especially so in the US.

      • SMcIntyre
        +3

        If you're risking dying of an anaphylactic shock every day, you don't really have time to wait for some other company to come and compete.

        If you're risking dying of anaphylactic shock every day, what you need is an injection of Epinephrine, which you can get from other autoinjectors, or from a manual injection. You don't need this specific delivery method. To put this another way: you need food to survive, you don't need a gourmet meal from Gordon Ramsey to survive. If you want a gourmet meal from Gordon Ramsey, you have to pay for it, and he gets to decide what the price is.

         

        Not only the government is doing nothing to ensure that the weak and ill get no protection, but they are actually conspiring to keep the big players in charge and crushing competition, because that brings them "campaign contributions".

        You'll get no argument from me on the assertion that the current administration is corrupt. The last three Presidents have been disastrous: From the corruption of Clinton, to Bush's illegal wars, to Obama's utter incompetence, we've been scraping the bottom of the barrel for the last couple of decades. You're preaching to the choir here.

        • leweb
          +6

          I think we'll have to agree to disagree on the first point. As a matter of principle, I don't think people should be forced to compromise on treatment choices for diseases based on socioeconomic status. Especially not when the system is so biased against the availability of fair options.

          On the second one, I wish there was some hope on the horizon, but sadly it seems that the barrel still hasn't run out of stuff to scrap. Seems like Douglas Adams was right about people who want to rule.

          • SMcIntyre
            +2

            No one is being forced to compromise on treatment, the medication is exactly the same. Epinephrine is just another name for Adrenalin, it's a naturally occurring hormone and whether you get it from an EpiPen or a different brand, it's exactly the same thing. The only difference is convenience.

            but sadly it seems that the barrel still hasn't run out of stuff to scrap.

            The only thing certain about this election is that, either way, it's going to be a long four years.

    • spaceghoti
      +9

      So it's okay that consumers are getting gouged because all they have to do is wait for another company to come out with a cheaper version of a drug that's used to prevent life-threatening allergic reactions?

      • SMcIntyre
        +1

        It's not price gouging just because you don't like it. There are specific criteria that make something "price gouging", and this doesn't meet any of them.

        • spaceghoti
          +5

          I'm sorry, does "profiteering" sit better with you? Let me express my concern with upholding the comfort of the comfortable.

          • SMcIntyre
            +2

            I hate to burst your bubble, but this doesn't even come close to qualify as profiteering either. But hey, don't let the facts get in the way of your narrative, because who cares about accuracy and honesty when you can go for snark?

            Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go watch Serenity again.

            • AdelleChattre
              +6

              So, to be clear, as far as you're concerned, there's no problem at all here then?

            • SMcIntyre
              +2
              @AdelleChattre -

              There's a big problem there. The article you linked is putting out the false narrative that it's either the EpiPen or nothing, when the fact is there are a wide range of low-cost, reusable, manual-load autoinjectors on the market. I'll say this again since you're having trouble grasping the concept: EpiPen is a brand name, it's not an exclusive medication, or an exclusive delivery device. It's a convince, not a necessity, Epinephrine is the necessity and it's readily available, relatively low-cost, and can be used with other autoinjectors that are likewise readily available, and relatively low-cost.

            • AdelleChattre
              +5
              @SMcIntyre -

              Say I need an epinephrine autoinjector and I can't afford to pay Mylan's jacked-up prices. What option do I have? Mind you, it must've been approved for that medical purpose by the FDA, must be substitutable for my EpiPen prescription, covered by my insurance and mustn't have been taken off the market last year.

            • SMcIntyre
              +3
              @AdelleChattre -

              Say I need an epinephrine autoinjector and I can't afford to pay Mylan's jacked-up prices. What option do I have?

              You buy one of the numerous manual-loaded autoinjectors on the market (anywhere from $20 - $150 depending on the accessories you buy with it). Get the Epinephrine from your doctor. Put the Epinephrine in the autoinjector, and then store it until needed. You're buying convenience with an EpiPen™, not increased functionality or efficacy, and not some proprietary medication or technology that no one else has. You are literally paying for the label, that's it.

            • AdelleChattre
              +4
              @SMcIntyre -

              So you'd have to get a new prescription, because what you're talking about isn't substitutable at the pharmacy or under existing protocols, but that shouldn't be too bad. Not sure where you're buying autoinjectors for $20 that work in exactly the same way as an EpiPen. Have you got a specific suggestion or an online source you'd be willing to share? I don't want to pry but, if you'll forgive me asking, do you carry an EpiPen or one of these workalikes?

            • SMcIntyre
              +2
              @AdelleChattre -

              So you'd have to get a new prescription, because what you're talking about isn't substitutable at the pharmacy or under existing protocols, but that shouldn't be too bad.

              I'm not sure, but I would imagine that yes, you'll probably have to get a new prescription.

               

              Not sure where you're buying autoinjectors for $20 that work in exactly the same way as an EpiPen. Have you got a specific suggestion or an online source you'd be willing to share?

              I'm sure they do work differently from EpiPens since you have to load them manually. Every real pharmacy I've ever been in has had autoinjectors, and I would imagine that they're available at online pharmacies as well (OptumRX and such).

               

              I don't want to pry but, if you'll forgive me asking, do you carry an EpiPen or one of these workalikes?

              I don't use either one personally.

            • AdelleChattre (edited 3 years ago)
              +5
              @SMcIntyre -

              My experience with them has only been to carry them in case one of my charges ever needed one. Not yet, so far — Knock, knock, knock. I hadn’t realized how dear they are.

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