EpiPen maker Mylan may have used illegal deals with schools to price gouge

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Enlarge / Heather Bresch, chief executive officer of drugmaker Mylan Inc. (credit: Getty | Bloomberg)

On Tuesday, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced that his office is investigating Mylan Pharmaceuticals Inc, the maker of EpiPen, for potentially using anticompetitive terms in contracts it had with many school systems. Those terms allowed schools to receive Mylan’s EpiPens for free or at discounted prices—as long as they didn’t buy any competitors’ products for a year.

The terms may have helped Mylan hike the price of the life-saving medical devices without facing stiff competition from similar epinephrine-injecting products, such as Adrenaclick. Since 2007, the year Mylan acquired EpiPen, the company has raised the price of the pens by more than 400 percent, pushing the list price above $600 (~£446) and drawing sharp public and political criticism.

“No child’s life should be put at risk because a parent, school, or healthcare provider cannot afford a simple, life-saving device because of a drug-maker’s anti-competitive practices,” Schneiderman said in a news release. “If Mylan engaged in anti-competitive business practices, or violated antitrust laws with the intent and effect of limiting lower cost competition, we will hold them accountable.”

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