Public Citizen Flags Sharp Decline in Penalties Against Pharma
Criminal and financial penalties against pharmaceutical manufacturers continued a downward trend in the past two years and financial penalties for unlawful promotion dropped dramatically since 2013, according to Public Citizen, in a new analysis of federal and state settlements from 1991 to 2017.
Financial penalties for unlawful promotion, which resulted in the most financial penalties and consisted mostly of off-label marketing, saw a dramatic decline since 2013 and were a significant cause of the overall decline in penalties, the consumer advocacy group said.
Criminal penalties against pharmaceutical companies also dropped sharply. In 2012-2013 there were $2.7 billion in penalties across 10 different settlements. In 2016-2017, however, a mere $317 million in penalties was spread across four cases — an 88 percent decrease compared to 2012-2013. Additionally, 89 percent of the penalties came from a single 2016 illegal kickback settlement involving Teva, according to the group.