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US: New York sues Actavis for generic blocking claims

 |  September 16, 2014

New York has filed a lawsuit against pharmaceutical giant Actavis over allegations of an anticompetitive moves to block generic competition that forced consumers to pay higher prices for an Alzheimer’s drug, according to reports.

NY Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a complaint against the Irish company on Monday that accuses the company of swapping out one version of its Namenda drug for another that had a longer period of time until its patent expired.

That plan, AG Schneiderman said, was aimed at blocking its generic rival from entering the market and violates both state and federal antitrust law.

”We’re sending a clear message to all pharmaceutical companies: Prioritizing profits over patients’ rights will not be tolerated,” the official said in a statement.

According to complaints, Actavis is discontinuing its Namenda drug to release a slow-release version of the same medication; Namenda’s patent is set to expire in October of next year.

The tactic is sometimes known as a “forced switch” that forces patients to switch medication, which delays entry of generic competition into the market.

Actavis did not immediately respond to requests for comment, reports said.

Full content: Bloomberg

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