West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey has filed a petition in the Mylan EpiPen price controversy.
According to the Attorney General’s Office, an investigative subpoena was issued on August 26, which was prompted by the publicly known facts surrounding the recently increased price of Mylan’s EpiPen.
Morrisey’s office filed the petition in Kanawha County Court Tuesday to enforce the subpoena against Mylan. He said the company initially agreed to cooperate, but has since failed to respond to the majority of the subpoena.
The subpoena inquires about the increasing price, alleged failed attempts on Mylan’s behalf to introduce an EpiPen competitor, litigation over intellectual property, the dominance Mylan has over the epinephrine auto injector market, and rebates Mylan paid to participate in the state’s Medicaid program.
The subpoena cites public reports suggesting Mylan paid rebate amounts typically associated with “non-innovator” drugs, even though brand-name drugs like the EpiPen generally pay higher, “innovator” drug rebates. The petition suggests that such conduct, if proven, could subject Mylan to a potential Medicaid fraud action under state law.
The Attorney General’s Office said Mylan acquired the exclusive rights to market the EpiPen in 2007, which has become a must-have for counteracting the effects of an allergic anaphylactic reaction. They said the EpiPen’s price “skyrocketed” thereafter from about $100 for a twin pack in 2009 to a current price tag in excess of $600.
Morrisey’s office said with the need for as many as three EpiPens and a shelf life of just one year, the price hikes have been difficult for many to endure.
“I have a statutory responsibility to investigate any potential antitrust violation,” Morrisey said. “Consumers lose when competition doesn’t flourish. My office owes it to consumers to be their watchdog and turn over every rock to ensure fair play.”
To read the full petition, click here.