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Home Page >> Settlements >> Johnson & Johnson to Pay Record $2.2B in Risperdal Whistleblower Lawsuit

Johnson & Johnson to Pay Record $2.2B in Risperdal Whistleblower Lawsuit


This is a settlement for the Risperdal lawsuit.

Washington, DC: Global health care giant Johnson & Johnson (J&J) and its subsidiaries will pay more than $2.2 billion in a Qui Tam (whistleblower) investigation. The settlement will resolve criminal and civil liability arising from allegations relating to the prescription drugs Risperdal, Invega and Natrecor, including promotion for uses not approved as safe and effective by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and payment of kickbacks to physicians and to the nation' largest long-term care pharmacy provider. The global resolution is one of the largest health care fraud settlements in U.S. history, including criminal fines and forfeiture totaling $485 million and civil settlements with the federal government and states totaling $1.72 billion.

The resolution includes criminal fines and forfeiture for violations of the law and civil settlements based on the False Claims Act arising out of multiple investigations of the company and its subsidiaries.

In addition to imposing substantial monetary sanctions, the resolution will subject J&J to stringent requirements under a Corporate Integrity Agreement (CIA) with the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG). This agreement is designed to increase accountability and transparency and prevent future fraud and abuse.

J&J Subsidiary Janssen Pleads Guilty to Misbranding Antipsychotic Drug.

In a criminal information filed today in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, the government charged that, from March 3, 2002, through December 31, 2003, Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc., a J&J subsidiary, introduced the antipsychotic drug Risperdal into interstate commerce for an unapproved use, rendering the product misbranded. For most of this time period, Risperdal was approved only to treat schizophrenia. The information alleges that Janssen' sales representatives promoted Risperdal to physicians and other prescribers who treated elderly dementia patients by urging the prescribers to use Risperdal to treat symptoms such as anxiety, agitation, depression, hostility and confusion.

The information alleges that the company created written sales aids for use by Janssen' ElderCare sales force that emphasized symptoms and minimized any mention of the FDA-approved use, treatment of schizophrenia. The company also provided incentives for off-label promotion and intended use by basing sales representatives' bonuses on total sales of Risperdal in their sales areas, not just sales for FDA-approved uses.

In a plea agreement resolving these charges, Janssen admitted that it promoted Risperdal to health care providers for treatment of psychotic symptoms and associated behavioral disturbances exhibited by elderly, non-schizophrenic dementia patients. Under the terms of the plea agreement, Janssen will pay a total of $400 million, including a criminal fine of $334 million and forfeiture of $66 million. Janssen' guilty plea will not be final until accepted by the U.S. District Court.

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Published on Nov-4-13


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