Pharmaceutical manufacturer Healthpoint, Ltd. has been involved in a civil suit with New Jersey that last week saw the Texas-based firm pay out $607,704 to the state’s Medicaid program. The settlement is part of two separate civil allegations launched by New Jersey against drug makers Healthpoint and Victory Pharma, Inc. The allegations against Victory Pharma also included criminal charges.
Texas’ Healthpoint, for its part, was found to have been involved with false claims submitted to New Jersey’s Medicaid program regarding the drug Xenaderm in an effort to make the medication, which was not approved by the FDA, eligible for Medicaid coverage.
According to a recent article in New Jersey Today, this latest settlement payout by Healthpoint is just one in a long line:
Under a multi-state/federal settlement, Healthpoint and its general partner DFB Pharmaceuticals has paid a total of $48 million to the federal government and 15 participating states, including New Jersey, to resolve state and federal False Claims Act cases…A complaint filed on behalf of federal and state governments against Healthpoint alleged that the company marketed Xenaderm without approval from the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In the 1970s, FDA characterized Xenaderm’s principal ingredient as “less than effective” for its intended use. That categorization disqualified it for Medicaid coverage, as federal health care programs, including Medicaid, have declined to pay for “less than effective” drugs since 1981. However, according to the complaint, which cited federal and state false claims act provisions, Healthpoint misrepresented the regulatory status of Xenaderm in quarterly reports submitted to the government, and as a result knowingly caused false Medicaid claims to be submitted for the medication.
The article goes on to provide details of the settlement between Healthpoint and the various states involved. It is said that individuals from the Attorney General’s Office of states such as Virginia, Ohio, North Carolina and Florida participated in the global settlement negotiations, which also saw the Texas-based company admit no liability for what occurred.