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The Justice Department and 16 states joined two whistleblower lawsuits alleging that Wyeth defrauded the government by offering discounts to hospitals on two of its drugs that it did not offer to Medicaid.

Once again, one of the big Drug Manufacturers, WYETH, has failed to play by the Rules.  The lawsuits that have been filed in Federal District Court in Massachusetts claim that Wyeth avoided paying hundreds of millions of dollars in rebates to state Medicaid programs for its Protonix Oral and Protonix IV acid-reflux drugs.  Medicaid, the health insurance program for the poor, is entitled to the lowest price on prescription drugs and drug makers are required to pay states rebates based on any discounts offered to other parties.  Wyeth sold $394 million of the drugs in 2008 but they brought in close to $2 billion a year in revenue before generic competition threatened them.  Medicaid is financed half by the Federal Government and half by the States which administer the program.

The LAWSUITS ALLEGE THAT Wyeth failed to pay Medicaid hundreds of millions of dollars because it didn’t pass along these discounts to the government.  By offering massive discounts to hospitals but then hiding that information from the Medicaid program, it’s believed Wyeth caused Medicaid programs throughout the country to pay much more for these drugs than they should have.

Not only to the big drug companies/manufacturers need to be monitored and regulated by the Food and Drug Administration as to their products’ safety they also need to be monitored and held accountable for offering discounts on some of its drugs to hospitals and not being up-front with Medicaid and the Federal Government and States that administer the Medicaid Program.

You can also search online for Wyeth Lawsuits and read additional information on this issue.

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