Congress Investigates Why Naloxone Is So Expensive

The cost to first responders of the overdose-reversing drug naloxone has increased dramatically in recent years, and some U.S. Senators are now demanding that pharmaceutical companies explain their price hikes.

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., sent letters to four naloxone makers asking for details about the discount programs they offer to police and fire departments and public health agencies.

In Washington, D.C., the cost to first responders of a naloxone syringe has quintupled since 2010. A vial of generic naloxone made by the company Amphastar has quadrupled in price since 2009.

"The rise in costs associated with acquiring naloxone has caused significant accessibility issues for those on the front lines of this epidemic," McCaskill wrote.

A naloxone auto-injector called Evzio sold for $288 per dose in 2014, but now costs more than $2,000, McCaskill noted.

Source: National Public Radio. Click here for more information.