Families angry about big price jumps for life-saving allergy injectors

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Families continue to struggle with the rising price of an Epi, or epinephrine pen. (WPVI)

Families continue to struggle with the rising price of an Epi, or epinephrine pen.

It's a life-saving device for people with severe allergies.

Over the past several years, the cost has continually gone up from about $100-dollars to now close to five-hundred dollars.

For many families, not much is covered by insurance.

"It's hard to swallow. It really is. The challenge is we really don't feel that we really have any other options. And when your kids' lives are at stake you do what you have to do to keep them safe," said Justin Henegar.

Mylan, the maker of Epipen, says the prices have "changed over time to better reflect important features and the value the product provides."

Many families say they haven't noticed any changes.

Mylan does offer a savings card, and a coupon for the EpiPen on its website.

The non-profit Allergy and Asthma Network is working to get the EpiPen placed on a preventive medicine list, so that health insurance companies will be forced to cover it.

You can reach the card and coupon here.

Dr. Fred Leickly says the auto-injector's technology hasn't changed much over the 30 years he has studied allergies.

He says the main competitor to EpiPen recently stopped producing its product, giving Mylan, something of a monopoly.

While insurance covers some of the cost for some patients, not everyone is lucky enough to have a plan that does.
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