SPRINGFIELD – Due to the extremely high cost of EpiPens, many people go without – living life each day hoping they aren’t faced with an allergic reaction that requires the lifesaving medicine. To combat the burdensome price, State Senator Julie Morrison (D-Lake Forest) is leading a measure to require insurers to cover medically necessary epinephrine injectors.

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“With increases in food allergies and other serious allergic conditions, people are relying on EpiPens more than ever,” Morrison said. “Nobody with a serious allergy should go without an epinephrine injector simply because they cannot afford one.”

In 2019, Morrison passed legislation to require insurers to cover medically necessary epinephrine injectors – also known by the brand name of EpiPens – for minors. However, she wants to take the law one step further by removing the age limitation. Morrison introduced identical legislation last year, but it was stalled due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

When injected into people experiencing a severe allergic reaction, epinephrine narrows blood vessels and opens lung airways, reversing the symptoms of a potentially fatal allergic reaction.

“People are dying because they can’t afford EpiPens,” Morrison said. “That’s wrong.”

Senate Bill 1917 passed the Senate Insurance Committee Wednesday. It now heads to the Senate for further consideration.

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