According to a Bloomberg report, patients in 45 states are unable to fill their prescriptions for EpiPens.
All about the market share
After Mylan bought the rights to sell EpiPens, it increased prices 550% — from $94 in 2007 to $608 in 2016.
The hikes tripled Mylan’s stock price, but also made them reliant on EpiPen sales, which now accounted for 40% of their profits.
After more than 700k consumers protested and prompted a Department of Justice lawsuit, Mylan introduced a cheaper generic version of the drug. But with the feds off their backs, Mylan continued to lobby against alternatives to their drugs to choke out competitors.
The FDA’s slap on the wrist didn’t hurt enough
Mylan joins companies like Turing Pharmaceuticals (pharma-bro Martin Shkreli’s company) and Valeant (which rebranded this week to clean up its image) that pay fines for price-gouging but continue to operate.
Now, even though EpiPen alternatives exist (some for as low as $10), Mylan’s market control has kept competitors so small they can’t help address the current shortage.
In the meantime, Mylan’s producer, Pfizer, says they “cannot commit to a specific time for when the supply constraint will be fully resolved.”