There is positive news for our customers who use a life-saving epinephrine auto-injector syringe, such as EpiPen. Authorized generic versions of EpiPen and Adrenaclick* are now available at a lower cost than the branded versions. Customers now have the opportunity to continue using the same product as the branded EpiPen and Adrenaclick at a lower cost and with a significant cost savings for clients.
Cigna's coverage of the authorized generic of EpiPen (Epinephrine Auto-Injector) is changing due to this authorized generic version now available. As a reminder, EpiPen contains the medication epinephrine, which is used in emergency situations for individuals experiencing severe allergic reactions. Mylan Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of EpiPen, announced they were releasing an authorized generic that was estimated to reach pharmacies by the week of December 19, 2016. It is important to note that the brand manufacturer is the one producing the authorized generic. As such, other than a slight variation in external packaging, the injection device and the drug contained within it are the exact same as the brand because they are coming from the same manufacturer.
No direct action is required by the patient to benefit from this change. As an authorized generic, pharmacies can automatically substitute the lower cost version without a new prescription or a need to contact their physician.
Cigna will continue to find ways to aggressively drive utilization of clinically effective medications that result in the lowest total cost for our employers and their employees. We have taken an aggressive stand on egregiously priced medications when appropriate alternatives are available.
Cigna believes the most effective way to control health care costs and improve overall health is to understand and manage the entire health experience including utilization, pharmacy and medical integration.
*Adrenaclick was a brand version of epinephrine auto-injector that was discontinued in 2012. The product was eventually sold to Impax Pharmaceuticals who began manufacturing an authorized generic version several years ago