Missouri to get $2M from drug marketing settlement

Missouri to get $2 million from GlaxoSmithKline drug marketing settlement

Associated Press

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Missouri will receive $2 million from drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline as part of a national settlement over deceptive marketing by the British company.

The London-based pharmaceuticals company has agreed to pay $105 million to 44 states to settle allegations that it unlawfully marketed its asthma drug Advair and the antidepressants Paxil and Wellbutrin. Missouri was among states whose attorneys general filed identical lawsuits in local courts.

The state lawsuits claimed that GlaxoSmithKline violated state consumer protection laws by misrepresenting the uses and qualities of the drugs and marketing them for purposes unapproved by the Food and Drug Administration in a practice called off-label marketing.

GlaxoSmithKline did not acknowledge any wrongdoing under the settlement, which is similar to one reached with the federal government in 2012 for a record $3 billion. But the company also agreed to rules that bar it from paying doctors to promote its products and providing financial incentives that encourage salespeople to market drugs for unapproved uses. It also can't market drugs using results from inadequate studies or making unapproved product claims.

The company's marketing practices remains under investigation in Britain, China and several other countries. The company said in a statement earlier this week that is has enacted several reforms, including no longer paying for doctors' trips to medical conferences and eliminating sales incentives linked to the number of prescriptions issued.

Nearly every big drugmaker has been prosecuted for off-label marketing and agreed to settlements with the government.

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