Cigna, a top health insurer, can be dropping coverage of the EpiPen.
The lifesaving allergy medication has been a flash point for debates over rising drug costs. company Mylan ( jacked up the cost of the EpiPen by more than 400% since 2009, in addition to also also was forced to develop a generic alternative amid national outrage. )
Cigna right now says the idea will only cover the half-priced generic design, which launched in December.
“The generic design, available right now in pharmacies, has the same drug formulation in addition to also also device functionality as the branded medication, yet at a substantial cost savings,” Cigna spokeswoman Karen Eldred said.
Mylan said the idea anticipated the coverage change due to the launch of its generic option.
The change comes as President-elect Donald Trump vows to fight increases in drug prices. He said many drug companies are “getting away with murder” at his first press conference since the election on Wednesday.
The harsh rhetoric sent drug stocks tumbling. Mylan shares closed down 4.3%.
Related: Drug stocks plunge after Trump complains about high prices
The EpiPen injects a dose of epinephrine to halt life-threatening allergic reactions.
In 2009, an EpiPen two-pack cost less than $100. By 2016, its sticker cost rose to $609. Amid accusations of cost gouging, Mylan CEO Heather Bresch was called to testify before Congress in September. in addition to also also in October, the company agreed to pay the U.S. government $465 million after the idea was accused of falsely classifying the EpiPen to overcharge the Medicaid system.
In response, Mylan began offering $300 savings cards for patients who have to pay full cost in addition to also also began developing its generic spinoff.
sy88pgw (fresh York) First published January 11, 2017: 7:20 PM ET