By JORDAN WILIAMS
Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced on Thursday a $19.5 million multi-state agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb (“BMS”) arising from alleged improper marketing and promotion of the drug Abilify. Abilify is the brand name for the prescription drug aripiprazole. It was originally approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) for the treatment of schizophrenia in 2002. Abilify is one of several second-generation antipsychotic prescription drugs, commonly referred to as “atypical antipsychotics.”
“Drug companies should not market their drug for off-label uses or make claims that are not supported by scientific evidence,” Attorney General Schneiderman said. “Consumers must be able to rely on their doctor’s advice for medication without having to worry about drug companies manipulating their advertising to promote their products at the expense of patients.”
The complaint explains that BMS violated state consumer protection laws by misrepresenting and minimizing risks of the drug. Some of the misrepresentation includes metabolic and weight gain side effects through misrepresenting the findings of scientific studies.
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