Drug Companies Conspire to Keep Generics Off the Market

If it seems harder to get a generic medication it’s not your imagination. With pay-for-delay tactics, brand prescription drug manufacturers pay generic drug manufacturers for not creating generic versions of their medication. This limits the number of prescription options available to patients and contributes to the growth in health care costs, according to the American Medical Assn. (AMA), which has adopted a policy to work toward ending the practice.

Pay-for-delay agreements are estimated to cost American consumers $3.5 billion per year. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has recommended that Congress pass legislation to protect consumers from such – agreements. But www.foxbusinessnews.com reports that Congress has failed to stop pay-for-delay and generic drug makers and big-name pharmaceutical companies have been winning court rulings that allowed it.

The Federal Trade Commission recently filed an amicus brief in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey stating that a branded drug company’s agreement not to launch an authorized generic drug “provides a convenient method for branded drug firms to pay generic patent challengers for agreeing to delay entry.”  The FTC also filed a brief in the case of Lamictal Direct Purchaser Antitrust Litigation.  In the case, the private plaintiffs alleged that GlaxoSmithKline paid Teva Pharmaceuticals to delay entry by promising not to compete with authorized generic versions of the drug Lamictal.

Last Updated 8/2/2017

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