Epipens, made by the Pfizer drug company, are the most common brand of epinephrine auto-injector, used to stop a life-threatening reaction to peanuts, bee stings, or other allergens.

Millions of children and adults around the globe with severe allergies carry EpiPens – a fact that has led to steadily increasing profits for the drug’s manufacturer and marketer.

EpiPen Sales Growing

With skyrocketing food allergy rates over the past two decades, EpiPen sales are on track to break records. According to one analyst, sales of EpiPens are expected to top $640 million this year. In the United States, EpiPens make up over 95% of the market for epinephrine injectors, and the brand name has become synonymous with the epinephrine medication itself.

Increased Marketing Efforts

Over the past two years, Mylan – the company in charge of marketing EpiPens – has invested millions of dollars and hired nearly 100 additional sales representatives to help promote EpiPens. Since Mylan began marketing the medication in 2007, the company has invested more than $15 million on TV commercials and other forms of consumer advertising.

Not surprisingly, Mylan has also backed a recent lobbying effort that led to the introduction of a federal bill that would encourage states to require public schools to keep Epipens on site. Mylan has hired consultants who once worked on efforts to make defibrillators more widely available. The company hopes to do the same with Epipens.

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