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FDA clears way for generic EpiPen

Posted at 3:48 PM, Aug 17, 2018

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared the way for a generic version of EpiPen to be created.

The FDA’s approval for a generic version, which will be created by Teva Pharmaceuticals, could help alleviate issues like high cost for the life-saving allergy medication.

Two year ago, prices for EpiPens skyrocketed, as manufacturer Mylan raised rates from less than $100 for a two-pack to close to $600.

But new action by the FDA paves the way for a generic form of the drug, so pharmacies can now offer a generic form to customers, without having to call the doctor to write a new prescription.

"Oh, it's a huge deal for consumers because the current price is astronomical for a drug that you hope never to use,” says Gerard Anderson, a professor at Johns Hopkins University who has testified about drug prices before Congress.

EpiPens have been experiencing shortages, made even worse by the back-to-school orders placed by parents. Anderson says this move to create generic forms should help with the supply and bring prices down.

“You’re still gonna get the same drug administered,” says Anderson of the generic forms of the medication. “And so, as a consumer, as a parent, I would choose a less expensive alternative.”