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In a boon to the pharmaceutical industry, the federal government moved to dismiss nearly a dozen lawsuits alleging drug makers devised schemes in which nurses were used illegally to promote their medicines and boost prescriptions, an arrangement that purportedly violated federal kickback laws.

In explaining its rationale, the U.S. Department of Justice argued the company that made the allegations was a “professional” whistleblower that used “false pretenses” to gather information for the “cloned” lawsuits. The feds complained that several investors created a company to file the lawsuits and pretended to conduct research studies in order to obtain information for their allegations, according to court documents in a case involving Bayer Pharmaceuticals (BAYRY).


The Justice Department went on to say there were insufficient facts to make it worthwhile to use government resources needed to press the cases and, moreover, the effort would have contradicted public policy. How so? Federal healthcare programs, such as Medicare and Medicaid, benefit when patients have access to product support for using or storing medications, the feds wrote in the Bayer case.

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