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Healthy Skepticism Library item: 14876

Warning: This library includes all items relevant to health product marketing that we are aware of regardless of quality. Often we do not agree with all or part of the contents.


Publication type: news

Florida nets $8.5M in Medicaid settlement
Orlando Business Journal 2008 Dec 29

Full text:

Florida will receive $8.5 million as part of a $375 million Medicaid settlement with Cephalon Inc., an international biopharmaceutical company, according to Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum.

The settlement, announced Dec. 29, resolves allegations of improper marketing for three of the company’s prescription drugs – Provigil, Gabitril and Actiq.

The settlement reimburses the federal government and participating states for money paid to Cephalon by the Medicaid program allegedly due to Cephalon’s off-label marketing campaign. While doctors are allowed to prescribe drugs for off-label uses, the law prohibits pharmaceutical manufacturers from marketing their products for such use.

Cephalon also entered into a corporate integrity agreement with the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General, requiring strict scrutiny of its future marketing and sales practices.

In addition to the civil investigation and settlement, the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania filed criminal charges against the company, alleging a misdemeanor violation of the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. In a plea deal, Cephalon agreed to pay $50 million to resolve those charges.

The settlement resolves a number of state and federally filed whistleblower lawsuits. All 50 states and the District of Columbia have signed the agreement.


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Email a Friend influence multinational corporations effectively, the efforts of governments will have to be complemented by others, notably the many voluntary organisations that have shown they can effectively represent society’s public-health interests…
A small group known as Healthy Skepticism; formerly the Medical Lobby for Appropriate Marketing) has consistently and insistently drawn the attention of producers to promotional malpractice, calling for (and often securing) correction. These organisations [Healthy Skepticism, Médecins Sans Frontières and Health Action International] are small, but they are capable; they bear malice towards no one, and they are inscrutably honest. If industry is indeed persuaded to face up to its social responsibilities in the coming years it may well be because of these associations and others like them.
- Dukes MN. Accountability of the pharmaceutical industry. Lancet. 2002 Nov 23; 360(9346)1682-4.