Richmond-based pharmaceutical company Kaléo has reached a deal with drugstore giant Walgreens to stock its epinephrine injection devices for infants and toddlers as a nationwide shortage of the drugs persists.
Kaléo’s Auvi-Q is an automatic injector used to treat serious allergic reactions, and Kaléo has the only device approved by the FDA for small children.
A shortage of the drug has been caused by manufacturing delays at the plant that produces EpiPens, the most widely used product for bee stings and food allergies. The shortage has lasted more than a year and is expected to continue for the coming months.
The Kaléo device is free for patients who have insurance, according to a news release announcing the partnership on Thursday.
Kaléo also makes the Evzio injector for naloxone, which is used to reverse opioid overdoses. The company received widespread criticism from lawmakers and public health advocates for raising the price insurers paid for that drug — which was also free to patients — from $690 to $4,100.
Afterward, Kaléo announced that it would immediately reduce the price to $178 for a two-pack and produce a generic version of the drug.