Processing Magazine

Novartis To Pay $72.5M to Settle False Claims Suit

May 5, 2010

Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis AG is paying $72.5 million to settle a whistleblower lawsuit accusing it of improperly billing government programs for unapproved uses of a cystic fibrosis drug, according to the Associated Press. The U.S. Attorney''s Office announced the settlement Tuesday and unsealed the lawsuit filed by former employees Robert Lalley, Courtney Davis and William Manos in 2006. The lawsuit alleged that biotechnology company Chiron Corp., which Switzerland-based Novartis acquired in 2006, billed for unapproved uses of its drug TOBI between 2001 and 2006. The federal government will receive $35.68 million. Ten states — California, Illinois, Florida, Texas, Georgia, Tennessee, Virginia, Massachusetts, Michigan and New York — will split $29 million. The three whistleblowers and their lawyers will divide $7.8 million.