DALLAS (CN) – Drugmaker Actavis will pay $84 million to settle a civil complaint of Medicaid fraud, the Texas Attorney General’s Office said Wednesday.
The state accused Actavis Mid-Atlantic and Actavis Elizabeth with defrauding taxpayers by improperly reporting drug prices to the Texas Medicaid program.
Under the settlement, the Attorney General’s Office recovered $29.23 million for the state’s general revenue fund.
After a 3-week trial in February, a Travis County jury confirmed the state’s allegations and found that Actavis falsely reported the price of its drugs, resulting in Medicaid overpaying pharmacies for Actavis’ prescription products.
Actavis appealed, but prosecutors said it agreed to the settlement to avoid lengthy appeals that would delay timely reimbursement to the state.
The state’s case stemmed from a whistleblower lawsuit filed under seal more than a decade ago by a small Florida-based pharmacy known as Ven-A-Care. The pharmacy owners pursued their claim after discovering that Actavis, among others, reported inflated prices to Medicaid for its drugs.
“Since 2000, the Texas Attorney General’s Civil Medicaid Fraud team has investigated multiple pharmaceutical manufacturers for reporting inflated drug prices to the Medicaid program,” the state said in a statement. “The State’s legal action against Actavis was one of those drug-pricing cases and was the only State whistleblower case to reach jury trial. With today’s settlement, the Office of the Attorney General has recovered almost $450 million on behalf of the taxpayer-funded Medicaid program in pursuit of drug-pricing schemes.”