Insurance claims to treat severe allergic reactions more than triple in one decade

Kara Marxer
March 22, 2019 - 4:49 am

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The number of insurance claims for anaphylactic food reactions rose 377 percent from 2007 to 2016, according to a new report from Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE).

For people like Caleb Winkler whom KMBZ featured in a Cover Story Thursday, a severe severe peanut allergy can be very expensive. EpiPens cost $500 each, said Kelli, Caleb's mother.

"I have to have two sets (of EpiPens) for school and two sets for home," Kelli Winkler said. "That's why it added up."

The Winklers found a new program through CVS Pharmacy which reduced the cost dramatically.

"The pharmacist actually called us back one day and said, hey, our tech was supposed to give you that program, so I'm going to give you $350 back, okay?" Winkler said.

Thanks to the program, the Winklers are only spending a few hundred dollars a year for allergy medications. The costs spike when they add in all the doctors fees, emergency room visits and insurance deductibles.

A study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that the costs of food allergies, from medical care to food to pharmaceuticals is roughly $4,184 per child, per year.
 

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