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Vermont To Receive $60,000 From Settlement Of Claims Against Novartis For Off-Label Marketing Of Cystic Fibrosis Drug

CONTACT: Edward A. Baker, Assistant Attorney General, (802) 828-5511

May 6, 2010

Attorney General William H. Sorrell announced today that Vermont will receive approximately $60,000 as part of a $72.5 million settlement with Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation and Novartis Vaccines & Diagnostics, Inc. (“Novartis”), that involved 49 states, the District of Columbia and the federal government. The agreement with Novartis resolves allegations that the company promoted the use of tobramycin, a cystic fibrosis drug which is marketed under the trade name TOBI®, for uses not approved by the Food & Drug Administration. The off- label marketing included promoting the drug for diseases other than cystic fibrosis and for use in cystic fibrosis patients under the age of six. As a result of this settlement, Novartis will pay damages equal to double the amount that Vermont and other states expended for prescriptions written as a result of the company’s off- label promotion.

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