18 May 2017Americas

Merck and Upsher-Smith agree to pay $60.2m in competition case

Merck and Upsher-Smith Laboratories have agreed to pay $60.2 million in settlement fees to direct drug purchasers.

It comes after they allegedly delayed the introduction of generic versions of K-Dur 20 (potassium chloride).

K-Dur 20 is a treatment for patients with potassium deficiency.

According to the settlement agreement, which was filed on Monday, May 15 at the US District Court for the District of New Jersey, although the companies have agreed to settle, they have denied all the allegations of unlawful actions.

The case arose back in 2001 when Hip Health Plan of Florida filed a class action complaint on its own behalf as well other companies affected.

Schering-Plough, now Merck, and Upsher-Smith had allegedly entered into agreements which kept all potential generic competitors out of the market.

The class action complaint claimed that these agreements cost third-party payors and consumers over $100 million.

The Federal Trade Commission accused Schering of allegedly making anti-competitive agreements back in 2011, but lost the case.

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