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Iowa AG Joins Lawsuit Alleging Drug Executives Conspired to Inflate Prices

Courtesy of The National Institute on Drug Abuse

Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller is one of 44 attorneys general who is taking part in a lawsuit alleging that 20 of the country's largest generic drug makers have conspired to inflate and manipulate drug prices.

Miller said the suit argues that executives at drug manufactures Teva, Sandoz, Mylan, Pfizer and others had an "informal working relationship" to allocate markets and rig bids for more than 100 drugs.

"By communicating by phone, by text, they outlined a very extensive informal way of setting prices and rigging bids," Miller said.

Miller said this resulted in price increases as high as 1,000 percent on drugs that treated a wide range of medical conditions affecting Iowans. 

"Just about any condition that you can think of (is) affected in one way or another, from basic tablets and capsules to beta blockers, statins, antibiotics, antidepressants, contraceptives," Miller said, "just a huge range of drugs affecting people who have diabetes, cancer, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, HIV, ADHD and others." 

Miller said the conspiracy has resulted in billions of dollars in fraud on "people with acute and chronic health conditions."

The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut. In addition to the 20 drug manufacturers, the suit also names 15 individual senior executives.

Natalie Krebs is IPR's Health Reporter