[WASHINGTON, DC] – U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) released the following statement after the Department of Justice and Mylan Pharmaceuticals announced a settlement of $465 million for the multiyear misclassification of EpiPen, which led to almost $2 billion in overpayments of taxpayer dollars by the federal government through Medicaid.
“This settlement amount is completely insufficient – a feeble fraction of the $1.27 billion Mylan swindled out of Connecticut and American taxpayers. Quite simply, the Department of Justice is letting this deceptive pharmaceutical behemoth off the hook. Absolving Mylan from a finding of wrongdoing has cleared the way for the company to pocket the money it embezzled from an American public in desperate need of lifesaving and affordable medications. The Department of Justice has abdicated its responsibility in pursuing the justice and the full debt owed to the American public,” said Blumenthal.
Blumenthal has led the call for a thorough investigation into whether the company violated the law when it knowingly misclassified the EpiPen, which allowed Mylan to pay lower rebates and reap huge profits at the expense of taxpayers. For nearly a decade, Mylan classified EpiPen as a “Non-Innovator Multiple Source Drug,” or generic drug, for purposes of the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program.
Last summer, Mylan announced it reached a $465 million settlement with the DOJ over the misclassification of the EpiPen. Blumenthal criticized the settlement, which did not require Mylan to admit any wrongdoing and pales in comparison to what now appears to be a $1.27 billion estimated financial harm to taxpayers caused by the misclassification.
Blumenthal sent a letter with U.S. Senators Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) calling on the Department of Justice to consider investigating whether Mylan Pharmaceuticals violated the law when it apparently misclassified its EpiPen product in order to pay a lower rebate to states and reap huge profits at the expense of taxpayers.
Blumenthal was also one of the first Senators to respond to Mylan’s excessive prices increases for a drug to treat extreme, life-threatening allergic reactions. He called for an investigation by the Federal Trade Commission, and hearings by the Senate Judiciary and Commerce Committees, on which he sits. Blumenthal also pressed the Food and Drug Administration to answer questions about its approval process and other steps for alternatives to the EpiPen.