Genentech and OSI Settle False Claims for $67M; Whistleblower to Get $10M

Posted: 06/07/2016  browse the blog archive
Genentech and OSI Settle False Claims for $67M; Whistleblower to Get $10M

Genentech Inc. and OSI Pharmaceuticals LLC have agreed to collectively pay $67 to resolve allegations that the pharmaceutical companies knowingly submitted or caused the submission of false claims in connection with misleading statements about the effectiveness of the drug Tarceva in treating non-small cell lung cancer, the U.S. Department of Justice announced yesterday.  Genentech and OSI Pharmaceuticals co-promote Tarceva, which is approved to treat certain patients with non-small cell lung cancer or pancreatic cancer.  

The settlement resolves allegations that Genentech and OSI Pharmaceuticals made misleading representations to physicians and other health care providers about the effectiveness of Tarceva to treat certain patients with non-small cell lung cancer, when there was little evidence to show that Tarceva was effective to treat those patients unless they also had never smoked or had a mutation in their epidermal growth factor receptor, which is a protein involved in the growth and spread of cancer cells.

As a result of the $67 million settlement, the federal government will receive $62.6 million and state Medicaid programs will receive $4.4 million.  The Medicaid program is funded jointly by the state and federal governments.

The settlement resolves allegations filed in a lawsuit by former Genentech employee Brian Shields, in federal court in San Francisco.  The lawsuit was filed under the qui tam, or whistleblower, provisions of the False Claims Act, which permit private individuals to sue on behalf of the government for false claims and to share in any recovery.  Shields will receive approximately $10 million.

The Chanler Group, in association with the Hirst Law Group, represents whistleblowers who take action under the False Claims Act to report fraud committed against the federal and state governments.  We have years of experience representing whistleblower clients who expose every kind of fraud against the government, including health care fraud, contract fraud, and tax fraud.  Read more about our expertise in False Claims Act cases and how you can take action.