Navigation Links
Pennsylvania Attorney General Corbett Announces a Multi-state, $58 Million Settlement With Merck Over Deceptive Advertising Concerning the Safety of Vioxx
Date:5/20/2008

HARRISBURG, Pa., May 20 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Pennsylvania, along with 28 other states and the District of Columbia, reached a $58 million settlement, the largest ever for a multi-state consumer protection drug case, with Merck over allegations of deceptive advertising related to the drug, Vioxx. Pennsylvania will receive more than $2.9 million.

Attorney General Tom Corbett said that in 1999, Merck allegedly launched an aggressive and deceptive advertising campaign which misrepresented the safety and improperly concealed the increased risks associated with Vioxx.

"Using Merck's Vioxx, which was a prescription pain relieving drug, carried an increased risk of having a heart attack or another serious cardiovascular side effect," Corbett said. "Merck allegedly knew about this, but continued to misrepresent the safety of their product in their advertisements until they finally admitted that Vioxx caused serious side effects and pulled the product from the market in 2004."

Corbett said that early on, Merck aggressively marketed Vioxx directly to consumers. This practice drove hundreds of thousands of consumers to seek prescriptions for the drug before doctors had a chance to gain experience with it and understand the side effects.

"Consumers need clear information about the risks associated with prescription drugs so that they can make well-informed decisions about their health care," Corbett said. "This settlement addresses all of our concerns and will restrict Merck's ability to deceptively promote any of their products."

Corbett also said that Merck allegedly engaged in "ghostwriting" positive articles and studies relating to Vioxx.

"Ghostwriting can be a particularly deceptive practice," Corbett said. "Some of these articles looked as though they were being published by an independent doctor or organization, but they were allegedly written by people who worked for, or had some sort of interest, in Merck."

Corbett said that after Vioxx was removed from the market in 2004, more than 25,000 private lawsuits were filed by consumers who were affected by the product. But, unlike those suits, this agreement will force Merck to change their practices.

As part of the settlement, Merck has agreed to:

-- Pay $58 million to the states involved.

-- No longer engage in "ghostwriting."

-- Refrain from using scientific data deceptively when marketing to

doctors.

-- Delay any direct-to-consumer television advertising for a pain

medication if recommended by the FDA.

-- Submit all television advertising campaigns to the FDA before release

for review and to adhere to any recommendations by the FDA.

In addition to Pennsylvania, this settlement includes Arkansas, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin and the District of Columbia.

The agreement was filed in Commonwealth Court by Chief Deputy Attorney General Thomas M. Devlin and Deputy Attorney General Nicole L. VanOrder of the Attorney General's Health Care Section.

EDITOR'S NOTE: For a copy of the agreement, contact the Attorney General's office at 717-787-5211.

CONTACT: Eric Shirk

Assistant Press Secretary

717-787-5211 (Cell) 717-480-0224

eshirk@attorneygeneral.gov


'/>"/>
SOURCE Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Governor Rendell Offers adultBasic Coverage to 35,000 Uninsured Pennsylvanians
2. Health and Business Groups Launch Ad Campaign About Need for Comprehensive Smoke-Free Law in Pennsylvania
3. NNN Healthcare/Office REIT Acquires 2750 Monroe Boulevard in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania
4. Pennsylvania Department of Aging Receives Grant to Improve Alzheimers Support
5. Pennsylvania Needs More Lung Cancer Research
6. Saint Vincent Health System of Erie, Pennsylvania Named One of AARP 2007 Best Employers for Workers Over 50
7. Pennsylvania Game Commission Announces EHD Confirmed in Allegheny and Westmoreland Counties
8. Maryland, Minnesota Go Smoke-free Oct. 1 - Pennsylvania Overdue in Following Suit
9. Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation Accreditation Status for Trauma Centers
10. Health Secretary Urges Pennsylvanians to Get a Flu Shot
11. Governor Rendell Calls for Prompt Action on Prescription for Pennsylvania, Cover All Pennsylvanians Health Care Reforms
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/27/2016)... , ... June 27, 2016 , ... "FCPX editors can ... inside of Final Cut Pro X," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film ... Final Cut Pro X users can now reveal the media of their ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Quality metrics are proliferating in cancer care, and are derived ... eye of the beholder, according to experts who offered insights and commentary in the ... Care. For the full issue, click here . , For the American Society ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... Clarkston, Michigan (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 ... ... respect to fertility once they have been diagnosed with endometriosis. These women need ... but they also require a comprehensive approach that can help for preservation of ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... TX (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... the United States, named Dr. Sesan Ogunleye, as the Medical Director of its new ... the facility Medical Director of our new Mesquite location,” said Dr. James M. Muzzarelli, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... A recent article published ... unfamiliar with. The article goes on to state that individuals are now more comfortable ... less common operations such as calf and cheek reduction. The Los Angeles area medical ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016 Research and Markets ... Electronics 2015-2025: Applications, Technologies, Forecasts" report to ... In-Mold Electronics, Smart Skin, Structural Health Monitoring, Composite ... Structural electronics involves electronic and/or electrical components and ... dumb structures such as vehicle bodies or conformally ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016 Research and Markets has announced ... Diagnostic Tests" report to their offering. ... The World Market for Companion Diagnostics covers ... Market analysis in the report includes the following: ... Diagnostic Kits) by Region (N. America, EU, ROW), 2015-2020 ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Arkis BioSciences, ... less invasive and more durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, ... funding.  The Series-A funding is led by Innova ... Fund, and other private investors.  Arkis, new financing ... instrumentation and the market release of its in-licensed ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: