An Epipen generic has finally been made available to consumers, after months of public criticism regarding EpiPen’s dramatic year over year price increase.
Last week, Mylan announced that a generic for EpiPen and EpiPen Jr. 2-Pak, called the Epinephrine Injection, USP two-pack, will be available in retail pharmacies this week. The package of two pens costs $300, half the sticker price of brand name EpiPen.
What is different about the newly available EpiPen generic?
There isn’t much of a difference between Mylan’s EpiPen and the Epinephrine Injection, USP. Since the FDA requires generic versions to be nearly identical to their brand counterpart, it was easy for Mylan Pharmaceuticals to offer a generic version.
In Mylan’s visit to Congress earlier this year, CEO Heather Bresch explained that the EpiPen generic will be nearly identical to the branded product they manufacture. The only difference will be a slight change in how the product is packaged.
Aren’t there other EpiPen generic options available?
Yes, but they aren’t tied exclusively to the brand EpiPen, since patents for the device haven’t been cleared for a direct generic. That being said, Mylan can offer a generic for brand EpiPen, because they own the patent.
Adrenaclick is a brand alternative to EpiPen. The best price we were able to find for Adrenaclick is $463.32 at Rite Aid, but that still isn’t a better price than the $300 version being offered by Mylan.
Though EpiPen didn’t have a sole generic until recently, Adrenaclick does have a generic alternative, which is simply titled Epinephrine. For Epinephrine the best price we were able to find was at Kroger grocery stores for $276.59.
Auvi-Q, which is another EpiPen brand alternative, is looking to make a comeback in 2017. Auvi-Q was removed from pharmacy shelves after it was found that the injector was delivering inaccurate doses. Kaléo Pharmaceuticals recently acquired the rights to Auvi-Q and say they have performed thorough testing to ensure the Auvi-Q injector will be accurate, reliable and consistent.
The generic Epinephrine may be the best option if you’re looking to save the most money on your EpiPen medication.
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It should be noted that Mylan pharmaceuticals is also offering a savings card for people on commercial health insurance that will provide up to $25 off the out-of-pocket costs for their authorized generic. Keep in mind, you will have to qualify to receive up to $25 off.
The bottom line.
Though EpiPen makers are now offering a generic alternative to the brand drug, it still may be in your best interest to explore the option of filling Adrenaclick’s generic, which is simply called Epinephrine.