Mandate insurance coverage of Epinephrine Injectors under the Affordable Care Act
This petition had 787 supporters
According to Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE), an estimated 15 million Americans have food allergies. This life-threatening disease affects 1 in every 13 children in the US, and this number continues to rise. A 2013 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that food allergies among children increased by approximately 50% between 1997 and 2011.
A reaction to food can range from an itchy mouth to a hive to anaphylaxis, a severe and potentially deadly reaction. Once an anaphylactic reaction starts, epinephrine is the first line of defense. Access to epinephrine can be the difference between life and death for a person with food allergies. If administered quickly enough, it can slow the allergic reaction and provide time for emergency medical personnel to arrive.
Children with food allergies must carry epinephrine with them at all times. These medications, while life-saving and vitally important, carry a steep price tag. A twin pack of Epi-pens, the most commonly prescribed epinephrine injector, costs $350.
There is no amount that a parent will not spend to ensure the safety and security of her child, but $350 for just one dose of medication is challenging to budget for. Furthermore, most families are required to purchase multiple epinephrine injectors -- one for home, one for school, etc -- and each one of these medications must be replaced each year.
We ask that you mandate that insurance companies pay for epinephrine injectors under the Affordable Care Act. Currently, insurance companies have to include some kind of prescription drug plan, but they have the option of choosing which medications they will cover and which they will not.
For people living with allergies, carrying an epinephrine injector is not optional. Epinephrine is more than preventative medication; it is potentially life-saving medication.
Food Allergy Research & Education: Facts and Statistics. (2014). Food Allergy Research & Education. Retrieved July 14, 2014, from http://www.foodallergy.org/facts-and-stats
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