Michael Laufer isn't allergic to anything to the extreme that he needs to carry an EpiPen, the automatic drug-injecting device that helps people with severe allergies survive if they come into contact with their allergen. However, Laufer, like the rest of the world, was upset when he saw that a 2-pen set rose in price from $100 in 2007 to $600 today. For those that depend on the device, sometimes they would go hungry or skip rent just to pay for the pen.
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Laufer released a video today that showed off instructions on how to make your own generic EpiPen for about $30.
They call it the EpiPencil.
“It functions just as well as an EpiPen,” Laufer says in the video, after demonstrating the assembly and showing that it works. “With no special training, anybody can use it.”
Laufer's video shows you how to create the spring-loaded syringe filled with pharmaceutical epinephrine. He even includes links where you can buy the parts. He does note, however, that you need a prescription for the epinephrine.
Still, Laufer tells IEEE that you can get it online from a chemical supplier. “There’s a small but hopefully growing subculture of people who are buying the active ingredients of drugs,” he says. “It’s encouraging to see people take control of their own heath.”
Of course, you have to be careful and this is absolutely not the safest way to go about it. Let's hope that government investigations into the inflation of the traditional EpiPen will result in lower prices.