Texas Attorney General Sues Pfizer for Defrauding Medicaid
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has had a really interesting year. He faced calls for impeachment by his own party, and eventually was impeached by the State of Texas. While we was acquitted on 16 charges during his impeachment, it wasn't resounding. The votes in the impeachment didn't have enough vote for full acquittal on all charges, falling short of 21 votes to acquit on many, because republicans joined democrats to convict.
Beyond the impeachment, Paxton has argued cases for his state that have been pretty unpopular. But this recent announcement might become one of his most popular legal fights.
This week, Paxton announced he has filed a lawsuit against pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, as well as Tris Pharma, and it's CEO. The lawsuit alleges the companies distributed medications to children on the Texas Medicaid program that consistently failed quality control testing.
The lawsuit alleges violations against the Texas Medicaid Fraud Prevention Act.
According to a release from Paxton, the companies and their leadership knowingly provided Quillivant XR to children diagnosed with pediatric attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder medication (ADHD), even though the drug had a pattern of failing quality control tests. Paxton says the companies used "flawed manufacturing practices", which led to the testing failures. The release states the AG believes the drug makers altered the drug testing method, in violation of state and federal law, to keep the drug on the market.
Also in the release, Paxton was quoted saying:
“I am horrified by the dishonesty we uncovered in this investigation. Pfizer and Tris intentionally concealed and failed to disclose the issues with Quillivant to receive taxpayer funded benefits through Texas Medicaid, defrauding the state and endangering children. Our Civil Medicaid Fraud Division has done an outstanding job holding these pharmaceutical companies accountable.”
This lawsuit was initially filed under seal protection, but a judge unsealed the information after a request from the Attorney General.
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