Politics

Manchin Opts Against Signing Dem Senate Letter Slamming Daughter’s EpiPen Price Hike

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Juliegrace Brufke Capitol Hill Reporter
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Sen. Joe Manchin’s name was noticeably absent from a Democratic Senate letter sent Tuesday to his daughter, Mylan CEO Heather Bresch.

Bresch sits at the center of a controversy involving the pharmaceutical giant drastically increasing the price of the EpiPen, a life-saving emergency allergy shot.

Twenty Democratic senators signed the eight-page note demanding answers by Sept. 12 on the company’s decision to hike prices by more than 500 percent since 2007.

In the midst of the firestorm of outrage, Mylan attempted to douse the flames by expanding its drug assistance program and announcing a cheaper alternative. Lawmakers were not placated.

“When patients receive short-term co-pay assistance for expensive drugs, they may be insulated from price hikes, but insurance companies, the government, and employers still bear the burden of these excessive prices,” the letter reads. “In turn, those costs are eventually passed on to consumers in the form of higher premiums, but the drug company is no longer in the spotlight.”

The senators asked for details on the effectiveness of Mylan’s savings card program, and the legality of using one for those covered under Medicare and Medicaid.

The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform announced Monday it plans to launch an investigation into the matter.

During the time frame of the jump in costs, Bresch’s salary skyrocketed from $2,453,456 to a whopping $18,931,068 in 2015, The Chicago Tribune reports.

The EpiPen hats served as a cash cow for the drugmaker, accounting for 40 percent of its operating profits in 2014.

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Juliegrace Brufke