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Grant & Eisenhofer Represents Lead Whistleblower in Historic $1.6 Billion Settlement with Abbott Laboratories Over Off-Label Marketing of Antiepileptic Medication Depakote
Date:5/7/2012

nts at extreme risk by marketing Depakote for purposes not approved by the FDA and by paying kickbacks to induce doctors to write prescriptions," said Grant & Eisenhofer partner Reuben Guttman, who heads the firm's whistleblower practice. Mr. Guttman and Traci Buschner, senior counsel at Grant & Eisenhofer, served as lead counsel for Ms. McCoyd.

"Abbott's unlawful practices showed how the company elevated aggressive sales and marketing of Depakote over medical decision-making, violating basic norms of health care and ethics. Abbott essentially preyed on two of the most helpless patient populations in children and Alzheimer's patients," Mr. Guttman added.

"Abbott directed its sales force to get Depakote widely used in nursing homes, principally to neutralize older patients as a substitute for proper staffing," Mr. Guttman said. "We are extremely gratified that the Justice Department and participating state AGs ensured that Abbott would pay a significant penalty for its rampant off-label practices."

"With health care fraud projected to top $60 billion annually, cases such as this should serve as a catalyst for lawmakers to take a hard look at the pharmaceutical industry," Mr. Guttman continued. "What happened here with Abbott was a train wreck. Now is the time for Congress to create a pharmaceutical and medical device safety and investigation board, which would conduct investigations with an eye toward providing honest information and analysis to practitioners."

Mr. Guttman and Grant & Eisenhofer have been counsel in some of the most prominent False Claims cases in recent years, including recently representing Lynn Szymoniak, one of the key whistleblowers in the government's $25 billion settlement stemming from foreclosure abuses by the banking industry.

Mr. Guttman also represented one of principal whistleblowers in a False Claims case that led to the recovery of $2.3 billion
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SOURCE Grant & Eisenhofer
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