At the heart of this proposed class action is a pharmaceutical corporation seeking to boost profits at the expense of families who need the lifesaving product it sells. The product at issue is the EpiPen®, a lifesaving emergency auto-injector treatment for millions of people who suffer from severe allergies and are at risk for anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis is a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction that can occur quickly, sometimes within minutes, following exposure to an allergen including foods, medicines, latex, and insect bites or stings. EpiPen®s are sold in packs of two, expire, and must be replaced on an annual basis.
As alleged, the need for many families to have one or more EpiPen®s on hand is hard to overstate. According to Food Allergy Research & Education—an allergy advocacy and research group— approximately 15 million people have food allergies in the United States and allergic reactions account for about 200,000 emergency room visits per year.
When someone has a severe allergic reaction, he or she must promptly inject themselves or be injected with epinephrine to prevent anaphylactic shock. Anaphylactic shock can kill, so having handy, pre-measured, pre-loaded epinephrine in a portable EpiPen® can be lifesaving.
Mylan is the only company selling EpiPen®s, and it has increased the price of its product more than 500% since 2007 when it began selling the device, which originally cost just $94.00 for a two-pack. While the EpiPen® reportedly costs Mylan just $34.501 to produce, today it sells the EpiPen® for a staggering amount: $600 or more for a two-pack.
Plaintiffs bring this consumer class action individually and on behalf of a putative nationwide class, as defined below (hereinafter “the Class”). Plaintiffs seek declaratory and injunctive relief, and to recover drug payments and overpayments made from at least the year 2007 through the present (hereinafter the “relevant time period”), as a result of Defendants’ unlawful scheme involving unfair, exorbitant, and unconscionable price increases.
This case concerns all EpiPen® products manufactured and distributed by Defendants including the following:
- EpiPen Jr.®;
- EpiPen 2-Pak®;
- EpiPen Jr. 2-Pak®;
- My EpiPen®;
- LIFE HAPPENS®;
- Be Pepared®;