Two former Warner Chilcott sales representatives, Lisa Alexander and James Goan, have blown the whistle with a bundle of allegations, including illegal marketing tricks, kickbacks and privacy violations. Federal laws and regulations restrict the way pharmaceutical companies market, sell and distribute their products, and the plaintiffs claim that Warner Chilcott simply trampled over them.
Scope of the allegations
The more than 250-page complaint describes in detail how two whistleblowers exposed Warner Chilcott’s disregard for the rules in marketing nine drugs. The allegations include the following:
Using a repertoire of kickbacks to induce doctors to prescribe its drugs
Falsifying prior authorization requests
Using unsubstantiated promotional claims
Pressuring sales representatives to sell at any cost or to be terminated
Violating its own compliance rules
Concealing violations by bribing employees and limiting documentation
Using discount coupons, rebates and loyalty cards to sidestep government program cost controls
An example of Warner Chilcott's practices is how it hired young and inexperienced sales reps and directed them to wine-and-dine doctors in violation of state law or get fired.
Violation of the False Claims Act
Plaintiffs also provided evidence that Warner Chilcott violated the False Claims Act. Through its carefully orchestrated scheme of paying kickbacks, falsifying prior authorization requests, making false and misleading promotional claims and other illegal promotional practices, Warner Chilcott caused the submission of false claims to government programs in violation of the federal False Claims Act. In total, the two whistleblowers initiated 33 claims against the pharmaceutical giant.
The complaint alleges that Warner Chilcott's illegal conduct caused the United States and qui tam states to pay hundreds of millions of dollars to the defendant for illegal claims. The complaint further states that patients were subjected to unapproved, unsafe uses of Warner Chilcott's drugs. The amount of damages is going to be in the hundreds of millions.
Posted in foreign corrupt practices act