Friday, January 19, 2007

Senate bill to limit Hatch-Waxman pay-offs to generics

The Deal discusses the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing of Jan. 17 which introduced legislation that would prohibit manufacturers of brand-name prescription drugs from paying generic makers to delay introduction of competing products.

The Deal quoted Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy: "Existing law is being misused by some brand name and generic drug companies. We'll examine the harmful effects of collusion that limits consumer choices and keeps prices artificially high. Congress never intended the brand name drug companies to pay off generic companies not to produce medicine." Senator Hatch stated: "I don't think the question should be between a bright line [ban on payments] and doing nothing. There may be some way we can do this so consumers benefit, generics benefit and brand names benefit." IPBiz notes that Senator Leahy will also be carrying the ball as to patent reform in the Senate.

The Deal article discussed the K-Dur matter, but did not mention the Plavix incident.


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