Photo credit: Mark Zaleski / AP
On Tuesday, September 6, 2016, a class-action lawsuit against Mylan Pharmaceuticals Inc. was filed in the Court of Common Pleas for Hamilton County, Ohio, asserting that the company’s price increases on EpiPen devices violates Ohio’s consumer protection laws. Mylan Pharmaceuticals acquired EpiPen in 2007 when the average price of the product was less than $100. By 2016, the price had risen to over $600. Named plaintiff, Linda Bates, is seeking class certification for all Ohio residents who purchased EpiPen devices from 2007 to present.
EpiPen devices are a critical aspect of everyday life for millions of people suffering from severe allergies such as peanuts, foods, horses and bee stings. Mylan argues that the price increases since its acquisition of EpiPen have been a necessity due to the millions of dollars the company allegedly spent on improvements of the product.
The defendant further alleges that it recoups less than half the list price for EpiPens. Bates’ lawsuit is not the only controversy Mylan is facing over its EpiPen devices. On the same day as Bates’ suit was filed, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced he will be conducting an investigation to see whether the company violated antitrust laws in its EpiPen contracts with certain school systems. Additionally, the company is facing class charges in federal court in Michigan over allegations that is attempting to gouge consumers by only selling the product in packs of two.
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