May
02

EpiPens come in two strengths, regular and junior. The junior size is for children up to 66 lbs. Both strengths are eligible for the $0 co-pay promotion by Mylan Specialty.

If you or someone you know has food allergies or insect allergies, you should see an allergist (special doctor trained in allergies) to learn if you need to carry epinephrine (commonly known as the Epi Pen) with you. Most families I know with food allergies are told to carry epinephrine (2 doses at all times). When a severe reaction hits, this medication can be critical for survival.

I’ve learned you cannot predict the severity of a food allergy reaction based on previous reactions. I’ve witnessed reactions that are mild for one exposure and very serious the next. In other words, I can’t just expect it will be the same type of reaction each time and need to prepare for serious reactions.

Many people KNOW they should carry an Epi Pen for severe allergies, but don’t actually do it for a number of reasons. I’ve heard:

  • It’s expired and I need a new prescription
  • They are so expensive
  • I’ll just give an antihistamine or call 911 if needed
  • I keep forgetting it at home

Friends – NO MORE EXCUSES!

The reason the FDA gives average people like you and me auto-injector needles with epinephrine in them is because people suffering from a severe allergic reaction need the medicine administered IMMEDIATELY – survival rates are highest when the epi is given in under 2 minutes from onset of symptoms. This means we need to act quickly and not “wait for the paramedics” or try to drive the person to the hospital ourselves.

Just read this story of the 11 year old boy who died recently of a food allergy reaction when he accidentally popped a pretzel with peanut butter in it into his mouth. He spit it out right away but started having symptoms of a reaction. Unfortunately he did NOT have an Epi Pen with him at a friend’s house that day and by the time his mom was able to get him home to his Epi Pen (four minutes away) his throat closed and he couldn’t breathe. This young boy tragically died. It breaks my heart and serves as a painful reminder how important it is to ALWAYS have epinephrine on hand.

You can get the Epi Pen for free through the end of 2014.

This is what the $0 co-pay card looks like when it comes in the mail. It has numbers printed on it that make it valid for the pharmacy (I blurred mine out in the photo).

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the EpiPen and to celebrate and increase access to epinepherine for families, schools and communities, Mylan Specialty (makers of EpiPen) is giving away $0 co-pay cards to anyone, which can be redeemed at your pharmacy to cover the co-pay portion of the prescription cost.

“Mylan has a long-standing dedication to increasing access to epinephrine auto-injectors through innovative access solutions such as the EpiPen4Schools program, and we’re pleased to continue that commitment by introducing our $0 Co-Pay Offer,” said Heather Bresch , CEO of Mylan.

How to get the Epi Pen for free

Even though I knew about this promotion for some time, I wanted to wait to write about it until I went through the entire process myself and could tell you first hand that it works and is not a scam or over-hyped promotion. I went through each of these steps and was able to get my EpiPen 2 pack for free and you can, too. Here’s how:

1. Visit epipen.com and look for the $0 copay offer graphic. Click the link to download their card right away and print from your computer. Or you can call 1-800-395-3376 and they will mail you the $0 Co-Pay Offer card. It took about 2 weeks for me to receive mine, so the online version is definitely quicker!

2. Make sure you have a valid prescription for an Epi Pen or Epi Pen Jr. (the card works for both). If you don’t have one, renew through your pharmacy or talk to your doctor.

3. When you go to pick up your prescription, hand over the $0 Co-Pay Offer card along with your insurance info. This worked for me – I was able to walk out without paying a cent. Which was awesome, because typically I pay about $100 for each prescription.

TIP: Before you walk out of the pharmacy, make sure the prescription is good for 12 months and that you have a pharmacy label on each of the Epi-Pens if you plan to store them at school or drop them off at child care. I’ve refused to take Epi Pens that expire in under 11 months before.

The $0 Co-Pay Offer card is good for as many Epi Pens as you need through the end of the year. NOW is the time to get an Epi Pen if you don’t already have one or two — or stock up for an extra set for school.

Fine Print From Mylan Specialty: About the “$0 Co-Pay Offer” Card
Mylan Specialty is excited to offer the 25th anniversary “$0 Co-Pay Offer” card. The offer is available to both cash-paying and commercially insured patients, including those with a high deductible. Certain restrictions apply. The “$0 Co-Pay Offer” (with maximum benefit up to $100 per each EpiPen 2-Pak) is valid for up to three EpiPen 2-Pak cartons or EpiPen Jr 2-Pak cartons per prescription. Eligible patients can use the offer an unlimited number of times until the expiration date, December 31, 2014. The co-pay card is available through physicians across the country. Patients can contact Mylan Customer Service at 1-800-796-9526 with any questions, and can obtain additional information about the co-pay card at EpiPen.com. In addition to this offer, EpiPen Auto-Injector continues to have more than 97% Tier 2 Preferred Commercial Coverage.
 
 Friends – Please share this post with anyone you know with severe allergies.

You can find more of my food allergy posts, tips & recipes on my Food Allergy page. I’d also love to connect with you on my Marketing Mama facebook page and twitter. This post, and all posts on this blog, are written from my experiences as a parent of a child with food allergies. I am not a medical expert and encourage you to consult with a doctor on your personal medical situation.

I am not affiliated with Mylan Specialties and received no compensation for this post. I was a guest of Mylan Specialties earlier this year as an attendee at a special event they hosted for food allergy bloggers.

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36 Responses to “no more excuses: get *FREE* Epi Pens in 2014”

 
  1. Gina says:

    This is amazing. I have an expired one and really have been waiting to get another one because they are SO expensive. I just called and left a message. Thank you thank you thank you.

    • Missy says:

      You are welcome, Gina! I hope this post helps many people – not only to get more EpiPens, but also to remember to carry them always!

  2. I’m fortunate in that our co-pays aren’t very much – but when you start adding all of the places you need your young child to have access to getting an epi-pen it gets expensive! Thank you so much for sharing this resource!

    • Missy says:

      Hi Christina – you are lucky to have low co-pays! Most people I know really struggle to afford them. Agree this is a great opportunity to have them in multiple places for increased safety!

  3. kristine j says:

    I can’t thank you enough for posting this, Missy. Seriously, our co-pay on the EpiPens was $240… FOR ONE SET! Needless to say, that was very large setback considering the time before last that we filled it, it was only $50 per set. Come August we’re due for new ones.

    • Missy says:

      You are welcome Kristine! Wow, that copay is really high. Please note that this $0 co-pay is up to 100 dollars, so it may not cover your entire copay, but should make a big dent in it!

  4. Jenny says:

    I’m a grownup with a nut allergy and I’ve NEVER had an epipen. Making an appointment to get a prescription this week.

  5. Annie says:

    I have an Epi-Pen for a medicine allergy; is this good for that use too? You only mention food and environmental allergies like bee stings. Thanks!

    • Missy says:

      Annie – yes, as far as I know, any valid Epi Pen prescription from a doctor would qualify for this promotion. Sorry for the confusion.

  6. A's Mom says:

    I am very glad for insurance this week, more so than usual. I picked up A’s six (!) epi-jrs. Our co-pay is $25.

    Retail value of pens? $800 and change.

    We have six because our pediatrician wants one on her person, one at home, one at the daycare providers house, one at school, and one at each Grandparent’s house (therefore, she should always have two).

    • Missy says:

      hey – you are lucky your copay is so low. Have you thought about your daughter keeping two epi pens on her at all times? then you could eliminate all the other ones? This is what we are going to do when my little one starts Kindergarten in the fall. Always on her person. Just a thought for consideration – much easier to keep track of 2…

  7. Jett says:

    This is an incredible offer. Thank you so much for getting the word out about it.

    • Missy says:

      you are welcome – to me increasing access to epinephrine is about saving lives – and that’s something I’m happy to support.

  8. Katie says:

    I found this online earlier today from the epi pen website. We just found out our daughter has allergies and so we knew we had to get this. Unfortunately, our epi pen’s are $250! We have a very large deductible. I wish they could lower the price of these. Even with using the $0 co pay card, I had to pay over $150. So sad, but we know it’s worth it. Thankfully we just need the 1 box of two-packs because she isn’t in day care or school yet. Thanks for sharing the tip!

  9. Homa says:

    Thank you for submitting this post to the blog carnival! The more the word gets out, the better. Epinephrine accessibility is so important and price is a big hurdle for many families.

  10. [...] Berggren wrote no more excuses: get *FREE* Epi Pens through the end of the year at her website Marketing Mama - it made me wish the program had been in effect when I had our [...]

  11. This post will save lives! Good job. There are no more excuses. My insurance does not cover our Epi Pens and I spent hundreds every single year. We give up a vacations to stay safe and I just wish more people would step up and now here is the golden opportunity!

    Thank you being a strong advocate!

  12. Awaroa Waikai says:

    What country is this for? Im in NZ my son has just started school but they are so good and want to learn more but I do need a epipen for his own safety. Got 3 young ones all at primary so if I can suss out a free one that would be wonderful.

  13. kathy says:

    100.00 off is great. but what if you have NO insurance?

  14. Bynnt says:

    I was given the exact $0 co-pay card by my allergist with a valid brand new prescription for epi. The fine print says max benefit up to $100. Pharmacist deducted $100. Gave my insurance info which also deducted some amount and my total was still $150. A twin pack (and you have to buy as twin pack) costs $380 cash value, no insurance.

  15. Rachael says:

    Does anyone know if I would be able to take the card in and get a refund? We just bought one yesterday and it was $250!

  16. Karen Finn says:

    We have good insurance coverage but had decided to drop the cost for a prescription coverage (we had been spending more on the coverage than meds). When I went to get my prescription filled for an epi-pen, a 2-pack cost $344!!! So, this coupon deal will help reduce that cost out-of-pocket! Thanks for your help!

  17. Sharry Knight says:

    I registered online. This is so awesome. I’m unemployed and have no insurance. I’m very allergic to bananas and have had two reactions in the last month. The one today was bad. I try to be very diligent but, they’re using bananas as filler in so much these days it slipped past me because it was in something I never would have dreamed of it being in. My doctor said it is vital that I carry Epi-Pen but, at $287 I couldn’t full the script today. Thanks!

  18. Ramona McDaris says:

    I think it is very sad and cruel that the manufacturer of Epi-Pens is charging such a high price for a product that literally must be purchased frequently due to expiration date, as well as in large numbers due to the fact that in child allergy, the children seem to go more places than adults, and a pen or two is necessary for each venue. It’s hard to believe that it costs the manufacturer a lot of money in these days to produce epinephrine injectables. Where is their conscience? They could still make a great profit by lowering their price on this life-saving, common medication and at the same time show some compassion and humanity toward the millions of allergic people out there who absolutely must buy their product or die. As it is, the patients are being held hostage by greed. I repeat, this medication is not a recent break-through still requiring large amounts of money to produce it. It has been around for a very long time. I am an RN and have long felt that pharmaceutical companies’ profit system is heartless and selfish. One nurse’s opinion, and thanks for letting me express it.

    • Kristie says:

      I know right crazy , they will let your child die because we just can’t afford it it’s 100.00 off great but at 189.00 left still can’t get it have no idea what to do !? School will not help Doctor will not help , no one ???

  19. Kristie says:

    This is not going to help us don’t know what to do my daughter has to have next week before she starts school our copay is soooo… high even with coupon our part is 189.00 CRAZY !!!!

  20. Nisa says:

    Didn’t help us much either. We also have an insanely high deductible so even with the hundred off I still paid $177. Except that I have two kids with Epipens so it was $354. And inorder to have a 2 pack at school and a 2 pack at home as suggested by the doctor I have to get a refill next month and fork out another $354. I am toying on only leaving one at school and one at home – which I’ve done in the past. We still have the expired ones that we could use as a second dose if needed (but I know first hand that expired ones don’t always work). And then there are the school forms – that cost us $140. Our doctor won’t fill them out if they haven’t seen them so it’s $45 office visit copay for each of them and they charge $20 for each form!!!! It’s insane. We know what they are allergic to and it hasn’t changed in the past 10 years so we go in each year to say nothing has changed – so frustrating. The fact that I grew up in the UK with National Health doesn’t help – I really feel doctors here are simply about charging a fortune and it’s not about what patients really need. Thanks for letting me vent!

  21. ij says:

    this still does not help those who have no insurance, and do not qualify for medicaid….at a cost of $531 each mine had expired last yr and i am highly allergic to all stinging insects…so i stay inside..

  22. Aelia says:

    You don’t need to call, the coupon is available online at http://www.epipen.com. And when you have the coupon make sure to give it to the pharmacy before you pick up the prescription because they have to bill it to them like insurance, they can’t just scan the coupon at the register. It takes a couple of minutes to do this depending on how busy they are. Its really annoying when people hand you coupons/trial cards at pick up or drive-thru and then we have to run the prescription through those coupons, print new labels, and have the pharmacist check everything out again, its such a waste of paper and time. Please hand your coupons to the pharmacy staff when you drop off your prescription or give it to them before they start ringing you up for it.

  23. Wendell says:

    Even with the card it is 176 for me .. Hard to swallow as a single Dad with three kids ..

  24. Worriedsick says:

    Unfortunately, this offer doesnt help me get an epipen prescribed by the pediatrician. I went to pick up the prescription and found out my insurance does not pay a penny toward the epipen. Total cost $289.77 so my little one goes to school daily and is forced to stay indoors, severe allergies to insect bites, especially bees and fire ants.

    How can this be that in this country you pay $480 a month for insurance and when u need it, it denies your child medicine. I am disgusted!

  25. Dana Pugh says:

    I have numerous allergic reactions to medications this year. Anaphylaxis to penicillin which sent me in an ambulance to the hospital. Recently I have had allergic reactions to blood pressure meds Micardis, cozaar,avapro,lisinopril and Norvasc. I have been told I need an Epipen.

  26. Kim says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this. My Grandson has peanut allergies, currently without insurance. Yes still a lot of money, but $100 is a big help. I’ve shared this with my daughter and sister in law who both have children with food allergies. It’s so dangerous to risk not having an epi pen available.

  27. Nat says:

    Unfortunately the coupon only takes up to $100 off and if you have a high deductible like me you are still stuck with a $200 bill. Unaffordable in my case.

  28. Rodrigo Benites Gonzaga says:

    Hi there,

    I´m from Brazil and here, believe it or not, there are no Epipen for sale, and they do not sell any kind of medication to be used in the case you have an alergic reaction.
    I myself have had a lot of problems with it, 2 weeks ago I was stung by a bee and in 2 minutes was at the hospital but they did not know how to treat me and because I passed away I could not tell them. the biggest problem is that in Brazil yoiu are not allowed to carry adrenaline, so you have to go to the hospital and seek treatment, but it all happens too fast that I´m afraid next time I could die untill I get to the hospital and get the medication I need.

    Is there a way I could byu it from Brazil? you guys are my only option left, I do not know how to deal with it anymore, my reactions just keep getting stronger and worse, I´ve been stung 4 times last year and am really afraid of it.

    Thanks

    BR

 

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