Senator Grassley demanding answers from EpiPen maker Mylan - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Senator Grassley demanding answers from EpiPen maker Mylan

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(KWWL) -

Many are expressing outrage over a drug company's dramatic price increase for a life-saving medication. Senator Grassley is now demanding answers from the company Mylan Pharmaceuticals, asking why they raised the price of the EpiPen more than 400% over the past eight years. 

EpiPen's are used in emergencies to treat people who experience a sudden and potentially deadly allergic reaction.

Now, there's backlash from lawmakers, who are accusing the company of price gouging. 

The drug has the potential to save someone's life. 

Hundreds of people now reaching out to Senator Chuck Grassley asking for his help in lowering that price. 

It's a life-saving drug for patients with potentially deadly allergies. 

43 million Americans keep an EpiPen close at hand, and one of them is Donita Krueger. 

Krueger is allergic to bees, and when she does get stung by a bee, it could be scary.

"I got nauseous," said Krueger. "I got an upset stomach. I got really light-headed, really sweaty and clammy. And it's not a good situation."

Krueger says she carries an EpiPen everywhere she goes.

"I have one in each of my vehicles," said Krueger. "I carry one in my purse. Every job that I've had knows that I have one. Just in case."

For the past few years, she's seen that price rise. 

In 2006, Mylan charged pharmacies $90 for an EpiPen 2-pak.

In 2010, the price was $150. Then $300, then $400, then $500, and now $608. 

She's had enough. 

"You have to sacrifice your child or your spouse or whoever for the price of not being able to afford a drug," said Krueger

Senator Grassley reached out to the CEO of Mylan asking for an explanation for the hike. 

The CEO Heather Bresch responding to backlash today, by offering a $300 savings card. 

"As a mother I can assure you, the last thing we would ever want is no one to ever have their EpiPen due to price," said Bresch. 

"If you can give a $300 gift certificate, why can't you just reduce the price?" said Grassley in response to Mylan's savings card. 

The CEO calls it a health-care issue. 

Senator Grassley says he's demanding answers from the FDA for why they didn't approve similar drugs in recent years. 

"Why didn't you approve those?" asked Grassley. "What other generic drugs would be in the pipeline that you could approve. Can you get them approved faster. Can you get them on the market, because competition would dictate that Mylan can't get away with what they're doing."

Mylan has raised prices on other drugs too.

The company is also not commenting on executive compensation. While raising EpiPen prices by more than 400%, top company executives saw their compensation jump by more than 600%.

Senator Grassley says he still has not heard from Mylan or the CEO Bresch. 

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