Supreme Court Declines To Review Case Over Generic Drug Deals
On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday let stand a ruling allowing drug companies to pay competitors to delay the production of generic drugs, the San Francisco Business Times reports (Leuty, San Francisco Business Times, 3/7).
The justices refused to review a U.S. appeals court ruling that dismissed a challenge by various pharmacies against Bayer, which paid Barr Pharmaceuticals to delay introduction of a generic version of Cipro, a popular antibiotic. More than 30 states and several consumer groups endorsed the appeal (Vincini/Bartz, Reuters, 3/7).
Opponents, such as the Obama administration and the Federal Trade Commission, say pay-to-delay deals cost consumers billions because generics do not reach the market for years. President Obama included a ban on pay-to-delay deals in his latest budget proposal. The administration said a ban would save the government $8.8 billion over the next decade.
In January, California Attorney General Kamala Harris (D) led 32 states in filing an amicus brief opposing the pay-to-delay deals.
Drugmakers argue that some generic drugs still reach the market before patents expire and that the agreements prevent long and costly court challenges (San Francisco Business Times, 3/7).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.