What to Do If You Can’t Afford Epinephrine Auto-Injectors


The manufacturers of epinephrine auto-injectors have extended their U.S. savings card programs through 2016.

Epinephrine is the only treatment for a severe allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis
(anna-fih-LACK-sis). It is only available through a prescription by your doctor. Each prescription comes with two auto-injectors in a set.

People with food allergies need two of these auto-injectors with them at all times. For children, this might mean having more than one twin set. For example, the child may need to keep one set at school and one set at after-school care. Another set typically stays at home. For adults, two auto-injectors might be enough.

Here are the updated savings card offers for epinephrine auto-injectors, as well as other ideas to try to save money on drug costs this year. Your final co-pay, if any, may vary depending on your insurance plan and the deductibles for your family.

  • EpiPen 2-Pak® – Mylan Specialty said its My EpiPen Savings Card ™ will extend through Dec. 31, 2016. The card can be used to reduce out-of-pocket expenses up to a maximum of $100 per EpiPen 2-Pak® carton. The card remains valid for up to three two-pack cartons per prescription, and may be used as many times as needed. The card is available at epipen.com/copay.
  • Generic Epinephrine Auto-Injector – Lineage Therapeutics Inc.’s “$0 Co-Pay Savings Card” can reduce the amount of your out-of-pocket expense up to $100 per generic epinephrine auto-injector two-pack. Each savings card can be used for up to three two-packs per prescription. Visit https://webrebate.trialcard.co...n/EpinephrinePortal/ for details and savings card download. Note: Although this savings card does not expire, you must print out a new savings card for each prescription. Every time you access the webpage, the code on the savings card automatically changes. Each unique savings card is valid for just one use.

Other possible money-saving options:

Change Insurance Plans – If you are buying insurance on the federal Health Insurance Marketplace, 2016 deadlines are coming up fast. If your family’s income is below a certain level, you might be offered Medicaid and/or your children might qualify under The Children's Health Insurance Program. This depends on your state. Visit www.healthcare.gov, or your state’s health insurance site. If you are privately insured through work, see if you can shop around during open enrollment.

Apply for Help – Mylan Specialty (maker of EpiPen) offers a patient assistance program. If your family’s income is below a certain level and you have no prescription coverage, you can apply for free or reduced cost epinephrine auto-injectors.  

Switch to the "Preferred" Auto-Injector – If you have prescription benefits, you may save on co-pays by agreeing to use the epinephrine auto-injector that is on the insurance "preferred" list. 


Use Mail Order – If you have prescription benefits, look into your plan’s mail order pharmacy options. This may give you a lower price or provide more sets of medication for the same price. Many mail order prescription plans provide patients with a three month’s supply of medication for the cost of two month’s copay.

Talk to Your Doctor – If you have insurance, talk to your doctor. Sometimes they can write the prescription so that you can get more sets of medication for one co-pay. Typically, a twin pack of injectors is considered a 30-day supply under your prescription plan. A physician might ask for six injectors (three twin packs) to be filled at once. This could then be filled through the mail order pharmacy, as described above.

Shop Around – Call around to different pharmacies. Prices can vary, especially between large chain pharmacies and smaller independent pharmacies. Be aware that the pharmacies at club stores such as Costco and Sam’s are generally available to non-members too.

Check with the Local Children’s Hospital – This option may work if your child sees doctors at a major children’s hospital. Ask if they have any grants or patient assistance programs that can help pay for your child’s prescription.

Talk to Your Employer – If you have medical insurance through an employer, contact their human resources department. Explain that your insurance is not covering a life-saving medication for you or your child. Sometimes, if you have a generous employer, they will try to help you.

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Note: On October 28, 2015, all Auvi-Q epinephrine auto-injector devices were recalled. Please visit the www.auvi-q.com website for details about the recall and when the devices will become available again.

Originally published January, 2015. Updated January 2016 


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