Last Updated Dec 24, 2008 4:18 PM EST
The news should cause some serious fear among execs at Risperdal marketer Johnson & Johnson (Janssen's parent), who are currently the subject of a lawsuit in Texas over linked claims. In that case, J&J is accused of giving "kickbacks" to Texas officials in order to get Risperdal onto the state Medicaid formulary. Specifically, the complaint says J&J was:
Providing them with trips, perks, travel expenses, honoraria and other payments.The kickbacks allegedly resulted in Risperdal being placed in a favorable position on the Texas Medical Algorithm Project, which guides when meds are to be used on Medicaid patients. TMAP was then used as a model for other states' formularies and exported, the complaint states. According to the Alliance for Human Research Protection:
He [Fiorello] was instrumental in bringing the Texas Medication Algorithm Project (TMAP) to PA in the form of PennMAP. This program ensured that the atypical antipsychotics including [Pfizer's] Geodon, Risperdal, Seroquel, Zyprexa and Abilify would be used extensively within the Pennsylvania network of care for the mentally ill.According to the Pennsylvania attorney general:
As part of his responsibilities, Fiorello served on a committee that decided which drugs would be used for mental health treatment in all state hospitals -- decisions which guided more than $9 million in annual drug purchases by the Commonwealth.Fiorello paid $27,000 in civil fines after the Pennsylvania Ethics Commission cited him in connection with the same allegations in 2005.
The conviction and its evidence trail will now be of extreme interest to Texas lawyers. Their case is a civil one, but the verdict in Pennsylvania will now doubtless cause them to wonder what the discovery process will bring, and whether their case can't morph into a criminal claim also ...
- Previous BNET coverage of the mismarketing of Risperdal:
- J&J and Risperdal: New Claims of Kickbacks and Fraudulent Marketing
- FDA: J&J's Risperdal and Lilly's Zyprexa Are Over-Used in Kids
- The Money Trail in the J&J Risperdal/Biederman Case