Pharmaceutical firms sued for fraudulent pricing

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Is big pharma gouging prices?Kansas attorney general Steve Six has said that 17 pharmaceutical companies will be added to an existing lawsuit that claims firms illegally inflated drug costs at the expense of the state’s Medicaid program.

Last month, Six sued 13 drug companies for allegedly misreporting the cost of drugs to the Kansas Medicaid program, in order to boost their reimbursement.

By listing higher costs on a variety of medications when reporting to the state, the firms increased their market share significantly, the suit alleges.

For example, according to Legal Newsline, Amgen/Immunex said that the average wholesale price of the drug Leucovorin Calcium was $137.94. However, the price paid by pharmacists was actually $14.58.

"We believe Kansas has lost millions of dollars as a result of these drug companies’ fraudulent pricing schemes," Six said.

He called the firms’ actions "a disturbing abuse" of the method by which Medicaid reimburses pharmaceutical companies.

Among the 17 defendants listed in the newest suit are Bayer, Eli Lilly and Novartis. The previous filing named Takeda, Schering Plough and GlaxoSmithKline – among others.

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Personal Liberty News Desk