MoreEpiPen auto-injection epinephrine pens manufactured by Mylan NV pharmaceutical company for use by severe allergy sufferers are seen in Washington, U.S., August 24, 2016.

By Ransdell Pierson and Ankur Banerjee

Reuters - Mylan NV said on Thursday it would reduce the out-of-pocket cost of its severe allergy treatment EpiPen through a discount programme, a day after Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton joined lawmakers in criticizing the drug's high price.

However, he added, "discounts for selected customers without lowering the overall price of EpiPens are insufficient, because the excessive price will likely be passed on through higher insurance premiums."

Clinton's view was echoed by Democratic lawmakers, including Rep. Elijah Cummings, who said Mylan's move is nothing but a public relations stunt that does nothing to help the majority of patients who need the drug.

Mylan Chief Executive Heather Bresch, defending EpiPen's price in an interview on Thursday on CNBC, said her company had spent hundreds of millions of dollars improving EpiPen, including making its needle invisible, since acquiring the device from German generic drugmaker Merck KGaA.

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