On Friday over its diabetes drug Avandia, charging a decade of false advertising and seeking compensation on behalf of patients and providers in California. MercuryNews reports the county claims the drugmaker made billions of dollars on Avandia, which caused heart attacks and strokes.
Although may personal-injury lawsuits against GlaxoSmithKline have been filed over Avandia, this is the first governmental lawsuit. It claims the drugmaker falsely advertised Avandia’s benefits and concealed its risks, according to Tamara Lange, Santa Clara County’s lead deputy county counsel.
The county alleges that GlaxoSmithKline earned billions of dollars on Avandia and cited an estimate that the drug caused 60,000 to 200,000 heart attacks, strokes and cardiovascular deaths nationwide from 1999 to 2006.
Santa Clara county spent $2 million on Avandia from 1999 to mid-2007 for indigent patients and also absorbed the cost of treating heart patients whose problems could have been avoided had GlaxoSmithKline warned of the risks of its drug, the county alleges. The lawsuit seeks to recover costs incurred by anyone who purchased Avandia, including hospitals, clinics and counties.
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