When drug companies offer medications that are dangerous for consumers, they can be on the hook for product liability. Such companies can also get into hot water if they mislead the public about a drug, or utilize what some would call defective or misleading marketing.
The British company GlaxoSmithKline has been the target of numerous civil and criminal investigations in relation to many of its drugs. Possibly the most notable was its marketing of Avandia, a diabetes drug.
According to the New York Times, the medication was severely restricted last year when researchers linked the drug to heart risks. Investigators say that the company manipulated research and paid doctors to promote the drug.
Now, the company has reached a $3 billion settlement with the U.S. government, apparently the largest of its kind. The money will apparently be used to settle the Avandia case, as well as a separate investigation by the Justice Department of Medicaid pricing practices. The settlement also apparently covers an investigation of the marketing and sale of the company’s drugs from 1997 to 2004, the Times reports.
Some say the $3 billion is actually a small chunk of change for a pharmaceutical giant like GlaxoSmithKline. The company reportedly has a market value of more than $110 billion. It typically brings in nearly $50 billion in annual revenue.
The company, which is apparently the fourth-biggest pharmaceutical company, had already set aside massive funds earlier this year in anticipation of settlements in a variety of cases.
If you are in need of a Orlando product liability lawyer to handle your drug company case, contact Oldham & Smith today.
Source: New York Times, “Glaxo settles cases with U.S. for $3 billion,” Duff Wilson, Nov. 3, 2011