States File Suit against Avandia’s Manufacturer, GSK
Avandia, rosiglitazone, belongs to a class of medications called thiaolidinediones and is prescribed to treat Type 2 diabetes when it cannot be controlled by other medications. Manufactured by the British-based pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and approved by the U. S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in May 1999, sales of Avandia have reached an estimate $3.2 billion. While some Avandia consumers have found help treating their Type 2 diabetes, others have suffered serious, life-threatening conditions, namely heart attack and stroke, due to GSK’s unwillingness to inform the public about the serious side effects from long-term use. Because of their false marketing and exaggerated claims of effectiveness, multiple states have sued GSK.
The most recent suit against GSK comes from South Carolina. State Attorney General Alan Wilson filed suit on in the 7th Judicial Circuit Court in Spartenburg on May 17, 2011, for fraudulently marketing Avandia and claiming millions in state funding went to prescriptions for Medicaid patients. The suit alleges that GSK continuously defrauded the state and bilked it out of millions of dollars by falsely claiming Avandia was safer and better at lowering blood sugar levels than existing medications. Wilson wrote, “GSK knew or should have known that these representations were not true and likely to deceive.”
Filed under the Unfair Trade Practices Act, Wilson is seeking a civil penalty of up to $5,000 per violation and punitive damages and $2,000 for each false claim made in connection with prescription for Medicaid patients in order to recover the millions spent on the drug and on treatment for the drug’s side effects.
In February 2011, Louisiana’s Attorney General Buddy Caldwell also filed suit against GSK. The lawsuit alleged that GSK caused 304,000 false claims for Avandia for Louisiana Medicaid patients.
The state is suing for $12.3 billion in damages claiming Louisiana’s Medicaid program paid more than $36 million to GSK for “grossly excessive prices” and “fraudulently induced Avandia reimbursements” beginning with Avandia’s approval by the FDA in 1999.
When filing the claim, Caldwell stated, “Our focus on these perpetrators sends a message of zero tolerance for such fraud and abuse.”
Have You Been Affected by Avandia?
Any individual or the relative of an individual who has suffered due to Avandia’s side effects is permitted to file a lawsuit. The lawyers can help you determine whether you are qualified to seek compensation. You may be eligible to seek reimbursement for medical expenses, compensation for pain and suffering, and punitive damages (compensation granted for losses suffered).
Different states have different legislation regarding medical lawsuits, so it is essential to hire an experienced and effective lawyer who can file the case. We can match your case with attorneys who have the experience to handle even the most complex claims, and we are accepting new cases. If you need further information about the harmful side effects of Avandia or legal advice concerning personal injury matters, we invite you to contact us or to fill out our form on this website for a free case evaluation.