The national controversy surrounding EpiPen injectors is hitting close to home for one Spokane man, who says he came close to dying more than a week ago, but is fine thanks to his EpiPen.
EpiPens increased from $100 in 2009 to more than $600 today. Zach Shallbetter says after his experience, he couldn't stay silent.
The EpiPen works to counteract life-threatening allergic reactions, which is exactly what Shallbetter was experiencing more than a week ago. He woke up in anaphylactic shock.
"Essentially I had no choice but to hit myself with the EpiPen," he said.
Shallbetter suffers from asthma and a number of allergies. After injecting himself with the EpiPen, he called for help from his children.
"One of them called 911 and the other one drug me downstairs," Shallbetter said.
While he recovered in the hospital for six days, Shallbetter heard about the EpiPen controversy and decided to share his story on Medium.com. In his article, Shallbetter is critical of Mylan (the company that produces the EpiPen) CEO Heather Besch.
"Companies shouldn't be able to manufacture a product that they intend to save people, and then increase the price over ten years like that. It's unreasonable," he said.
Business experts note, there hasn't been much change in the product to warrant a price change either.
"The technology really hasn't changed much over the last eight years, but meantime the price is now up over 400 percent," said ABC News Business Correspondent Rebecca Jarvis.
Shallbetter says he would like to see a change come to the healthcare system through this controversy. He says that starts with you and I calling our state representatives.
"If you call and you tell them exactly how you feel and you make a big deal about it and you tell them you will not support them unless they help to improve the system, nothing is going to change," said Shallbetter.
You can read a script Shallbetter wrote to read to your representative in his article HERE.