COVID-19 Vaccine Maker Pfizer Paid $2.3 Billion In Largest Healthcare Fraud Settlement in History

Did you know the COVID-19 vaccine maker Pfizer in 2009, had to pay $2.3 billion in the largest healthcare fraud settlement in history to resolve criminal and civil liability arising from the illegal promotion of certain pharmaceutical products.

COVID-19 Vaccine Maker Pfizer Paid $2.3 Billion In Largest Healthcare Fraud Settlement in History
COVID-19 Vaccine Maker Pfizer Paid $2.3 Billion In Largest Healthcare Fraud Settlement in History

American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer Inc. and its subsidiary Pharmacia & Upjohn Company Inc. in 2009, agreed to pay $2.3 billion in the largest health care fraud settlement in the history of the US Department of Justice, to resolve criminal and civil liability arising from the illegal promotion of certain pharmaceutical products.

Pfizer plead guilty for misbranding Bextra with the intent to defraud or mislead. Bextra is an anti-inflammatory drug that Pfizer pulled from the market in 2005.

Pfizer promoted the sale of Bextra for several uses and dosages that the US FDA (Food and Drug Administration) specifically declined to approve due to safety concerns. The company paid a criminal fine of $1.195 billion, the largest criminal fine ever imposed in the United States for any matter. Pfizer also had to forfeit $105 million, for a total criminal resolution of $1.3 billion.

In addition, Pfizer agreed to pay $1 billion to resolve allegations that the company illegally promoted four drugs – Bextra; Geodon, an anti-psychotic drug; Zyvox, an antibiotic; and Lyrica, an anti-epileptic drug – and caused false claims to be submitted to government health care programs for uses that were not medically accepted indications and therefore not covered by those programs.

The civil settlement also resolved allegations that Pfizer paid kickbacks to health care providers to induce them to prescribe these, as well as other, drugs. This is the largest civil fraud settlement in history against a pharmaceutical company.

As part of the settlement, Pfizer also agreed to enter into an expansive corporate integrity agreement with the Office of Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services. That agreement provides for procedures and reviews to be put in place to avoid and promptly detect conduct similar to that which gave rise to this matter.

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As a part of the resolution, six whistleblowers received payments totaling more than $102 million from the federal share of the civil recovery.

As GreatGameIndia reported, a senior managerial executive whistleblower of the pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca has revealed in shocking details that the AstraZeneca could not be held responsible for any side-effects from its COVID-19 vaccine. The company has agreements with governments as per which AstraZeneca cannot be held responsible and those affected will have no legal recourse.

According to the co-founder of BioNTech, Dr Ugur Sahin, the COVID-19 vaccine he designed for Pfizer was designed in just few hours in a single day on January 25, 2020. No other vaccine in history has been created and manufactured so quickly. Previously, the fastest vaccine ever developed took more than four years.

Earlier, a nurse collapsed on live television at a press conference soon after receiving Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine at a Tennessee hospital. Nurse Manager Tiffany Dover had been speaking to the media about the city’s first vaccinations of front-line health workers when she collapsed.

A couple weeks earlier it was revealed in a document released by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration that 6 participants died during Pfizer’s COVID vaccine trials. Meanwhile, another volunteer died during trial of COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University.

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