EpiPen Shortage on Long Island

I read today in Long Island’s newspaper, Newsday, that there is an EpiPen shortage.

An EpiPen is an inject-able medication for emergencies where a severe allergic reaction occurs. This “pen” is injected into the thigh and the medication goes right to the blood stream.
I have first hand experience with the value of having an EpiPen on hand.
My daughter was visiting last year and while sitting outside was stung by a bee. Within 3 minutes she was delirious and lost consciousness. I have EpiPens on hand because of my own allergies. I gave it to her husband and once he administered the medication she began breathing again. By the time the ambulance arrived my daughter would have been dead if I didn’t have my pen.
This was the worst experience in my life and I wish there was a way for everyone to have access to EpiPens!!
The damage this reaction caused was a heart problem and she is now run down often. I am thankful that I just happened to have the pen and we saved her life. 
Most people aren’t even aware of this life saver. I am looking into having all schools and businesses keeping these pens on hand. 
The article tells us that the manufacturer’s of the EpiPen are behind on production. There will be many children on Long Island going to school without these life saving devices. Most schools require the student to have EpiPens to keep in the nurses office. Some won’t allow the students to attend classes without then.
There is an alternative to these EpiPens, the Auvi-Q injector pen and it is in stock. The problem I found with this alternative is the availability for people on Medicare. I was approved through my insurance company and when they went to fill the prescription it was going to be $1500 for one pen. So I couldn’t get it due to the high cost. There is a program for those without Medicare that they can receive the pen for free. This is outrageous!!
There is another option where patients can request their doctors prepare ampuls of epinephrine, the same medication inside an EpiPen.
Newsday quotes the statistics as 15 million adults and 6 million children with food allergies. Of those, 2.4 million children have had a life-threatening incident.  This is scary when you think about the shortage of medication.
There is good news that the Food and Drug Administration on Thursday approved the first generic version of EpiPen made by Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, which could help  drive down the cost. This can’t come soon enough.
Read about it here https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/epipen-teva-pharmaceuticals-generic-version-stock-new-shortage-fda-a8496856.html
If you believe every company, store, school, etc should carry these life saving devices please reach out and let your legislators know this should be a law and that the government should supply these life saving devices. Once I have more information for who to contact I will let you know. If you have the required information, please email me at catherine@catherinemlaub.com so I can spread the word. 
EpiPen is an injection containing epinephrine, a chemical that narrows blood vessels and opens airways in the lungs. These effects can reverse severe low blood pressure, wheezing, severe skin itching, hives, and other symptoms of an allergic reaction.

If you  have commercial insurance you can get your Auvi-Q for free by going here https://www.auvi-q.com/

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.