Dealing with Bad Pharma
California has concluded agreements with three drug companies that allegedly cut illicit deals to keep generic drugs off the shelves and protect their brand-name products. The state has picked up $70m from Endo Pharmaceuticals, Teikoku Pharma Teva and Pharmaceutical Industries, plus the settlements temporarily prevent the companies from doing further so-called pay-for-delay deals.
The cases involve two drugs: Provigil (a narcolepsy treatment) and Lidoderm (a shingles patch).
“These dark, illegal, collusive agreements that drug companies devise not only choke off price competition but burden our families and patients: they force every Californian to shoulder higher prices for lifesaving medication. It’s nothing less than playing with people’s lives,” says state attorney general Xavier Becerra
The AG states that the drug firms’ behaviour can see consumers paying up to 90% more for prescription drugs.
By the way, this isn’t a case of the Golden State being super zealous, the three companies have separately settled with the Federal Trade Commission consumer agency over similar allegations related to Provigil and Lidoderm.