Kaiser wins $142 million in lawsuit against Pfizer
A federal jury in Boston awarded Kaiser Permanente $142 million in a lawsuit against Pfizer targeting off-label marketing of the epilepsy drug Neurontin by Warner-Lambert Co., which Pfizer acquired in 2000. The complaint alleged that Warner-Lambert created acceptance of the drug for a variety of unapproved uses by hosting seminars for physicians and ghostwriting articles signed by physicians paid to lend their names. “As a result, we ultimately spent more than $100 million on a very expensive drug that we now know is no more effective than a placebo for pain, bipolar and many other conditions it was promoted to relieve,” Kaiser said in a written statement. Pfizer plans to appeal the verdict, which came after a 21-day trial and affirmed Kaiser’s claims that the tactics violated the federal racketeering statute and constituted fraudulent business acts under California law.