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Kaleo, Maker of $4,100 Overdose Antidote, Authorizes a Generic Version for Just $178

Tuesday, December 11, 2018   (0 Comments)
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A month after the drug maker Kaleo came under fire from lawmakers and public-health advocates for charging $4,100 for a device that reverses overdoses, the company has announced it will introduce a generic version for a small fraction of the price.

The company announced Wednesday it has authorized its subsidiary IJ Therapeutics to produce a largely identical version of its automated naloxone injector for a retail price of $178 for a kit, which, like the $4,100 brand-name version, contains two doses. First responder groups and health departments will be offered the brand-name product Evzio at the same price.

While Kaleo says Evzio is already available at no cost to most private health insurance beneficiaries, the generic will foster broader access to some Medicare beneficiaries. It will become available in mid-2019, the company said in a statement.

“With approximately 130 people dying daily from opioid overdoses, we recognize that more needs to be done to improve access for patients,” said Spencer Williamson, the company’s president and CEO.In recent months, Kaleo was the subject of two investigations — one by “60 Minutes” and another by the Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations — exploring why the company raised Evzio’s list price from $575 to $4,100 during a four-year span in which overdose deaths also accelerated rapidly.

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