For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Bob Cooper
(208) 334-4112

Date: May 8, 2012

Wasden Joins in Second Settlement with Abbott Laboratories

(Boise) – Idaho will receive $763,110 in a second legal settlement with Abbott Laboratories involving the alleged illegal marketing of the prescription drug Depakote, Attorney General Lawrence Wasden said today.

This settlement, joined by Wasden’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, resolves the state’s claims for losses incurred by Idaho Medicaid.  $381,555 in restitution will be returned to the Idaho Medicaid program and $381,555 will be deposited in the state general fund.

The states contend that from January 1998 through December 31, 2008, Abbott promoted the sale and use of Depakote for uses that were not approved by the Food and Drug Administration as safe and effective.  This alleged conduct resulted in false claims to Medicaid and other federal healthcare programs.

Further, the covered conduct from the settlement provides that Abbott Laboratories made false and misleading statements about the safety, efficacy, dosing and cost-effectiveness of Depakote for some unapproved uses; improperly marketed the product in nursing homes; and made illegal payments to healthcare professionals and long-term care pharmacy providers to induce them to promote and/or prescribe Depakote.

The $1.5 billion settlement is the second largest recovery from a pharmaceutical company in a single civil and criminal global resolution.  Abbott Laboratories will pay the 49 states, the District of Columbia and the federal government a total of $800 million in civil damages and penalties to compensate Medicaid, Medicare, and various federal healthcare programs for harm suffered as a result of its conduct.

In addition to the civil settlement, Abbott Laboratories pled guilty May 7 to a violation of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) and agreed to pay a criminal fine and forfeiture of $700 million.

On Monday, Wasden announced a separate settlement of the state’s claims under the Idaho Consumer Protection Act.  The state will receive $1,220,050 from that settlement.

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