News release from state attorney general’s office:
Tennessee will receive approximately $4.5 million as part of the largest ever multistate consumer protection agreement with a pharmaceutical company for alleged deceptive marketing practices.
Attorney General Bob Cooper announced that he and 35 other Attorneys General reached a record $181 million agreement with Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a subsidiary of Johnson and Johnson. The multistate group alleges that Janssen improperly marketed the atypical (second generation) antipsychotic drugs Risperdal, Risperdal Consta, Risperdal M-Tab, and Invega.
The States allege that Janssen engaged in unfair and deceptive practices when it marketed Risperdal for unapproved or off-label uses. Specifically, the complaint alleges that Janssen promoted Risperdal for off-label uses to both geriatric and pediatric populations, targeting patients with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, depression, and anxiety, when these uses were not FDA-approved and for which Janssen had not established that Risperdal was safe and effective.
By Lucas Johnson, Associated Press
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A report on parole practices cites a collaborative effort between the Tennessee Board of Probation and Parole and the state Correction Department as an effective way to assess the needs of offenders when resources are limited by budget restraints.
The report released in August noted the focus of the departments’ Joint Offender Management Plan in 2009 was to reduce correctional costs to the state, “particularly through reducing parole and probation revocations.”
To do that, funds were shifted from the Department of Correction to the Board of Probation and Parole to support treatment interventions in the community through a network developed by the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities.
The overall collaboration saved the state $33 million within its first year, said state officials, who launched the program with the intention of saving taxpayers money, reducing recidivism, preserving expensive prison beds for the most dangerous offenders and making communities safer.
“We were able to use their people instead of going through the time and expense of having to contract service providers in the community ourselves,” parole board spokeswoman Melissa McDonald recently told The Associated Press in reference to the mental health network.
News release from state attorney general’s office:
Three family members who ran two Nashville furniture stores and were alleged to have taken orders for furniture but failed to deliver the items purchased have agreed not to engage in future illegal business practices, Attorney General Bob Cooper and Gary Cordell, director of the Division of Consumer Affairs, announced today.
The State of Tennessee filed suit last year against Amanda Lee Drew, Timothy Bryan Drew and Anita Renee Drew, who did business as WOW Furniture, formerly at 726 Gallatin Road in Madison until it closed in 2009, and also against Timothy and Anita Drew doing business as Drew’s Furniture Depot (also known as Drew’s Furniture at 3854 Dickerson Pike from 2001 to 2008).
News release from attorney general’s office:
Tennessee has joined a $40.75 million, multistate agreement that resolves allegations that GlaxoSmithKline, LLC (GSK) and SB Pharmco Puerto Rico, Inc. (SB Pharmco) were using substandard processes while manufacturing some of their prescription drugs, Attorney General Bob Cooper along with Gary Cordell, director of the Division of Consumer Affairs, announced today. As a result, Tennessee will receive $1.34 million.
The Tennessee Attorney General’s Office, which was on the Executive Committee investigating the matter, and 37 other state attorneys general alleged that GSK and SB Pharmco engaged in unfair and deceptive practices when they manufactured and distributed certain lots of drugs that were adulterated. The drugs included Kytril (a sterile drug used to prevent nausea and vomiting caused by cancer chemotherapy and radiation therapy), Bactroban (an antibiotic ointment used to treat skin infections), Paxil CR (the controlled release formulation of the popular antidepressant drug, Paxil) and Avandamet (a combination Type II diabetes drug).
“Tennesseans should be able to buy their medications with the confidence that they are getting safe and effective drugs,” Attorney General Cooper said. “While we are not aware of any confirmed problems with any of the drugs, there is always a possibility that some did reach the state. We hope the injunctive relief in this agreement will discourage any other company from eroding Tennessee’s consumer confidence through deception.”
Consumers should note that there is no current cause for concern regarding the drugs covered by this agreement because all adulterated batches have been recalled for many years and/or the products’ expiration date is past. If consumers do have concerns they should contact their health care provider.
GSK and SB Pharmco are no longer manufacturing drugs at their Cidra facility in Puerto Rico, which has been closed since 2009. As a result of the agreement, GSK and SB Pharmco are enjoined from making false, misleading or deceptive claims regarding the manufacturing of all drugs formerly manufactured at the Cidra facility regardless of where these drugs are now produced. In addition, the companies must not misrepresent those drugs’ characteristics, or cause likelihood of confusion or of misunderstanding about the way in which they are manufactured.
The State’s Complaint and Agreed Final Judgment may be viewed by going online to
www.tn.gov/attorneygeneral and clicking on “Filings of Interest.”
Consumers who have complaints about any individuals or businesses engaged in unfair or deceptive trade practices should contact Consumer Affairs at either 1-800-342-8385 (toll free inside Tennessee) or (615) 741-4737. Complaints also may be filed online at http://tn.gov/consumer/consCompFrm.shtml.