CNN reports that Illinois has just become the first state to require insurance companies to cover the cost of EpiPen injectors for children. House Bill 3435, signed by Governor JB Pritzker, will come into effect on January 1. Health insurance companies would have to pay for "medically necessary epinephrine injectors for persons 18 years of age or under."
In a tweet, Pritzker wrote, "This legislation takes a big step forward in protecting our children and families."
When people have allergic reactions, an EpiPen counteracts the attack with epinephrine to reduce swelling and open airways. Epinephrine is also known as adrenaline.
"With steady increases in food allergies and other serious allergic conditions, families are relying on EpiPens more than ever before," Illinois State Senator Julie Morrison, a sponsor of the bill. "We should be doing everything we can to expand access to affordable lifesaving drugs and medicines. No child with a serious allergy should be without an epinephrine injector because they cannot afford one."
In 2009, two EpiPens could be purchased for $100, but by 2016, the price skyrocketed to $600.
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