By now you've probably heard of Mylan Pharmaceutical. The company and it's CEO, Heather Bresch, have been implicated in a scandal involving the skyrocketing price of its main product - auto-injecting epinephrine pens, or EpiPens, designed to save the life of someone in anaphylactic shock (severe allergic reaction). In 2009, an EpiPen cost $104, and today it costs $609, a 400% increase. As a result, Mylan has tripled its sales revenue since 2010.
Most stories have focused on the role of Mylan CEO Heather Bresch, the daughter of West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, in the EpiPen price hike. Less has been said about the role Congress has played in allowing one company to hold a monopoly over a life-saving drug, thus enabling it to price-gouge consumers who depend on EpiPens. Mylan Pharma controls 80% of the market share when it comes to EpiPens, and has no real competitor. This is a direct result of the company's effective lobbying and campaign contribution strategy to shut down new laws promoting competition within the pharmaceutical industry.
Who in Congress is helping them shut down competitors? Find out next.