Have you heard the news that the FDA has approved the first generic version of the EpiPen?
“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved the first generic version of EpiPen and EpiPen Jr (epinephrine) auto-injector for the emergency treatment of allergic reactions, including those that are life-threatening (anaphylaxis), in adults and pediatric patients who weigh more than 33 pounds.”
FDA Press Announcement on FDA approves first generic version of EpiPen
That’s likely surprising news to all of those folks who have been prescribing and using generic epinephrine injectors this past year.
Is This Really the First Generic Version of EpiPen?
Many remember that we all talk about EpiPens so much because their cost jumped from about $100 in 2006 to over $600 in recent years.
That prompted Mylan, the company that makes the EpiPen 2-Pak and EpiPen Jr 2-Pak, to come out with a half-price authorized generic version last year.
“An authorized generic is made under the brand name’s existing new drug application using the same formulation, process and manufacturing facilities that are used by the brand name manufacturer.”
An authorized generic Adrenaclick injector also became available for a cash price of $109.99 CVS pharmacies. Combined with a $50 coupon, that’s often your best deal on an epinephrine injector if you don’t have insurance.
How Much Will the First Generic Version of EpiPen Cost?
And now we have a true generic version of the EpiPen 2-Pak and EpiPen Jr 2-Pak, from Teva Pharmaceuticals USA.
“The reduction in upfront research costs means that, although generic medicines have the same therapeutic effect as their branded counterparts, they are typically sold at substantially lower costs.”
FDA on Generic Drug Facts
Will it be cheaper than current EpiPens?
“When multiple generic companies market a single approved product, market competition typically results in prices about 85% less than the brand-name.”
FDA on Generic Drug Facts
It should be, but how much cheaper will it be?
“A company spokeswoman declined to say when it would be available, or how much it would cost.”
F.D.A. Approves Generic EpiPen That May Be Cheaper
While most folks would be happy with a $90 EpiPen and a tier 1 generic copay, I wouldn’t count on it. For one thing, we technically don’t have multiple generic EpiPens competing against the TEVA EpiPen yet.
And looking at drug prices of some of TEVA’s other medications, you can get a clue about their pricing plan:
- Airduo generic (similar to Advair, but about 1/4 the price) – $98
- Qvar (similar to Flovent) – $200
- ProAir (albuterol inhaler) – $71
- Budesonide Inhalation Suspension (generic Pulmicort Respules) – $176
- Levalbuterol Inhalation Solution, USP (generic Xopenex) – $121
- Clindamycin Phosphate and Tretinoin Gel (generic Ziana) – $600
- Cefdinir oral suspension (generic Omnicef) – $45
- Syprine (generic trientine hydrochloride) – $18,375
Their drugs typically ain’t cheap…
Will the first generic version of the EpiPen simply be a little cheaper than the authorized generic or can we expect TEVA to offer it at substantially lower cost?
What’s your guess?
More on the First Generic Version of EpiPen
- FDA approves first generic version of EpiPen
- F.D.A. Approves Generic EpiPen That May Be Cheaper
- Will the new generic EpiPen be cheaper?
- FDA – Generic Drug Facts
- FDA – Generic Competition and Drug Prices
- Study – High Generic Drug Prices and Market Competition: A Retrospective Cohort Study
- Patients Eagerly Awaited a Generic Drug. Then They Saw the Price.
- Watson Pharmaceuticals – Now Part of Teva – to Pay $33 Million to Mississippi
- Health care costs: Prescription medications
- In Rube Goldberg Price Scheme, EpiPen Competitor Auvi-Q To Be Free For Patients, $4,500 For Their Insurers
- Why Your Pharmacist Can’t Tell You That $20 Prescription Could Cost Only $8
- Pharmacy Price Index
- When Drugs Cost Too Much
- How Companies Price Drugs
- Generic Drugs: Are they Equivalent?
- Epinephrine Options and Training
- Alert – Epinephrine Shortage
- Insurance Appeal Information for High Epinephrine Cost / Denial of Coverage
- 2017 Patient Assistance Resources for Epinephrine Auto-Injectors
- EpiPen and its authorized generic Savings Cards
- authorized generic Adrenaclick Savings Card
Last Updated on August 18, 2018 by Vincent Iannelli, MD