Valeant Pharmaceuticals International comes under fresh scrutiny
Valeant Pharmaceuticals International said on late Wednesday that it had got 2 federal subpoenas related to its pricing, distribution and patient support practices. The drug maker has come under fire for aggressively raising the prices of its drugs.
The United States attorney’s offices in Manhattan and Massachusetts issued the subpoenas. According to the company, most of the material asked for was concerned with its patient assistance programs. Requests about distribution of its products, information given to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and its pricing decisions were also among the requested material.
The programs for patient assistance like when a company covers a patient’s co-payment, can aid patients in getting a drug they might not be able to afford otherwise. But this means that the payment for the drug has to be made by Medicaid, Medicare or commercial insurers.
It is not the first time that a drug company has received subpoenas, it is common. There are some cases in which investigations do not lead to any charges or settlements.
In the previous month, Valeant’s stock was weak as the main attention was taken by companies that have sharply hiked the prices of old drugs. Valeant have faced scrutiny from a few members of Congress for the acquisition of 2 old heart drugs, Isuprel and Nitropress, in February and instantly hiking their prices by over 500% and 200%.
Senator Claire McCaskill, a Missouri Democrat, criticized the company last month for not answering substantively to a request for information made by her August. On Wednesday, Valeant announced that it had given information on pricing to Senator McCaskill.