Mylan Will Not Testify Before Senate Judiciary Committee
Mylan CEO Heather Bresch

Mylan (MYL) has turned down Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley's invitation to testify on its pricing practices for EpiPen in front of the Senate Committee on Judiciary at the end of November.

Grassley, the Iowa senator who is the head of Justice Committee previously urged the pharmaceutical company to appear in front of the Senate to discuss "overcharges to the taxpayers through the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program."

Latham & Watkins global co-chair of the white collar defense and investigations practice and a partner in the litigation and trial department, Kathryn Ruemmler, penned a letter on behalf of Mylan to Grassley, declining the offer. That letter was made public late Nov. 21.

"I don't think it's very surprising," Bernstein analyst Ronny Gal wrote via email. "There is no signed agreement, the Department of Justice declined to respond, there is really no content for them to explain or discuss."

Mylan has come under fire for its pricing strategy surrounding its anaphylaxis device, EpiPen, which saw price increases from the company 25% year-over-year. The drug industry average is 10% increasing in prices. Patients reported that EpiPens cost $600 per two-pack earlier this year.

Myland CEO Heather Bresch did testify before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee in September.

Since these problems came to a head over the summer, Mylan has offered coupons and programs for low income patients that reduce the device's price for the most vulnerable customers.

Then came information that Mylan was misclassified by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services for years, which allowed the company to collect more money for its device.

"This happened because either the agencies in charge dropped the ball, the company gamed the system, or both," Grassley said in a statement. "Ironically, the company was eager to talk about this problem a few weeks ago in a press release to investors but not before the United States Senate."

He also noted that the Center for Medicare and Medicaid declined participation in the Nov. 30 hearing.

"It's a shame government agencies and the company are ducking accountability under a voluntary process," Grassley said. "One way or another, I intend to get answers for patients and taxpayers."

Gal wrote that he was skeptical of politicians' motivations for pressing Mylan on this issue. "This seems mostly an opportunity for grandstanding on behalf of some elected officials," Gal wrote via email.

The hearing is still scheduled for Nov. 30.

In addition to pressuring Mylan to appear before the Senate, Grassley was pressing the Securities and Exchange Commission to investigate the misclassification of EpiPen.

"If Mylan's purpose of the press release was to increase stock prices at the risk of misleading investors, it is exactly this set of facts and circumstances that the SEC should monitor," Grassley wrote in a letter to SEC Chair Mary Jo White. "Companies cannot be allowed to manipulate the markets and investors via press releases.

He added that while the SEC is already investigating Mylan, he wanted the commission to disclose whether it was investigating this particular piece of the puzzle.

Mylan, which has a market cap of $19.4 billion, saw shares fall 1.1% Tuesday, hitting $36.25 per share.

The company declined further comment on the matter. Ruemmler could not be reached for further comment.

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