Humana sues generic drug manufacturers for price fixing

Humana demands compensation in generic drug price case, stating it lost $1.7 billion buying generic drugs at ‘grossly inflated prices’ from the pharmaceutical companies it accuses of collusion.

The Delaware headquartered health insurer on August 3rd filed a lawsuit against dozens of pharmaceutical companies it accuses of conspiring to fix prices of medicines used by millions of Americans.

Humana’s complaint follows a United States Justice Department investigation into the generic-drug manufacturing industry that began in 2014, prompted by concerns over soaring drug prices.

Humana is demanding compensation for damages “incurred from egregious overcharges it paid for certain widely used generic drugs, arising from a far reaching conspiracy among defendants and others to blatantly fix the price of such drugs.”

Two of the drugs included in the lawsuit are glipizide–metformin and glyburide-metformin; both are mostly used in the treatment of diabetes. Other listed drugs are used in treatment of epilepsy, glaucoma, anxiety and blood pressure.

Humana argues that the United States’ generic drug market is susceptible to price fixing because it has fewer players and many barriers to entry.

It accuses the targeted pharmaceutical companies of conspiring to fix prices through secret communications and meetings.

Some of the major companies cited in the Humana lawsuit include Mylan, Novartis and Sandoz.

President Donald Trump has singled out drug companies as the main reason behind soaring drug prices has vowed action against collusion in the industry.

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