ZEPHYRHILLS (FOX 13) - Outrage over the cost of the EpiPen has families exploring cheaper options, and a Florida company says looking overseas could be the answer.
One option people are looking into is called AdrenaClick, it can be more affordable, but is not as easy to administer as the EpiPen.
Experts usually warn against ordering prescriptions from abroad, but in some cases, like with the EpiPen, it could be the better option.
Local pharmacy chain Canadian Med Store says their cost for an EpiPen 2-pack is $180, and that’s what the pharmacy is now selling them for. Compared to the $600 or $700 being charged elsewhere and that has everyone angry. An EpiPen prescription can be filled by the Canadian Med Store based out of Zephyrhills.
They have an agreement with International Pharmacies in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and England, where prices can be 60- to 70-percent less than in the U.S. After hearing about the EpiPen price hikes, its London pharmacy partners have agreed to waive their mark up and offer EpiPen at cost to consumers in the United States.
You still need a prescription from an American doctor, and then the drugs are mailed to you. The Canadian Med Store says it’s seen a big shift in the number of customers interested in this option to get medications. It used to be mostly seniors, but now it's young families looking for less expensive options.
Bill Hepscher, Director and founder of the Canadian Med Store, explained what he believes is behind younger people coming to his stores for their prescription needs.
“Because of the changing landscape, I think, of health insurance, a lot of folks are moving toward high deductible style health plans. And that’s one of the reasons that these young families, that maybe used to pay a $25 or $50 co-payment are now [staring to pay] the full cost for the prescription until they hit that deductible. So when you’re talking about a drug like EpiPen, they’re responsible for that full $600 or $700 because they haven't reached their $3,000 deductible,” Hepscher told FOX 13 News.
He added, his stores will keep this offer for as long as their international partners in London waive the markup. He expects that to be at least for a few months, to help families stock up as kids start school.