Maybe, but no one is talking, according to the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, citing the New York Times. Here is the background:
Zyprexa was Lilly’s top selling drug last year. It rang up $4.8 billion and accounted for 25 percent of the company’s total sales, but it also has brought the company many legal headaches.
Beginning in late 2006, a series of articles in the Times said Lilly downplayed the drug’s risks and marketed it for uses unapproved by the Food and Drug Administration.
Attorneys general from 30 states have subpoenaed documents detailing Lilly’s sales, marketing and promotional practices for Zyprexa as part of a civil investigation under state consumer protection laws.
The drug also has faced thousands of product liability claims from patients, many alleging the company did not adequately warn patients taking the medication of a heightened diabetes risk.
And here is what is being said:
Lilly spokeswoman Tarra Ryker declined to elaborate on the possibility of a settlement when reached by phone.
“We are cooperating with the government in these investigations, and the discussions around those are confidential,” she said. “We’ve said pretty much all we’re going to be able to say on this.”
She also declined to comment on the payment amount.
“We don’t know where the information came from,” she said.
The Times reported that federal prosecutors in Philadelphia are leading the settlement talks for the government, in consultation with Justice Department headquarters in Washington.
The amount being bantered around is 1 Billion dollars.
This is about the dumbest thing I have heard. From Law.com:
Litigation over an insurer’s refusal to pay health benefits for anorexia or bulimia may turn on what is revealed from the alleged sufferers’ e-mails and postings on the social networking sites MySpace and Facebook.
The plaintiffs are suing in federal court in Newark, N.J., on behalf of their minor children, who have been denied benefits by Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey.
Horizon claims that the children’s online writings, as well as journal and diary entries, could shed light on the causes of the disorders, which determines the insurer’s responsibility for payment. New Jersey law requires coverage of mental illness only if it is biologically based.
Horizon claims the eating problems are not biologically based and that the writings could point to emotional causes. It contends that access to the writings is especially important because the court has barred taking the minors’ depositions.
And insurance companies wonder why everyone hates them. Look, this is just another way for an insurance company to get out of paying for something to line their already fat pockets. So let me get this straight, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield are not going to pay for disorders that are not biologically based? What about the kid who breaks his arm at a football game. What about smokers who develop lung cancer. Don’t even try if your depressed because your going through a divorce. It was one thing when insurers wanted detailed medical histories, but now it appears they want to delve into every detail of a person’s life to justify not paying a claim. At the same time, they charge higher and higher premiums. Nice. At some point the public (employers are already realizing this) are going to revolt and demand the service these companies promise at the time they sell the policies. Already, employees, when given the choice ,overwhelmingly take cash over insurance benefits, because of things like this. I guess everyone will have to make this choice before the insurance companies wise up and realize there are other options to their dictatorial policies and unjustifiable high rates.
This from the Evansville Courier Press:
The nation’s largest pediatricians’ group on Monday said ABC should cancel the first episode of a new series because it perpetuates the myth that vaccines can cause autism.
ABC’s new drama, “Eli Stone,” debuts Thursday. It features British actor Jonny Lee Miller as a prophetlike lawyer who in the opening episode argues in court that a flu vaccine made a child autistic. When it is revealed in court that an executive at the fictional vaccine maker didn’t allow his own child to get the shot, jurors side with the family, giving them a huge award.
“If parents watch this program and choose to deny their children immunizations, ABC will share in the responsibility for the suffering and deaths that occur as a result. The consequences of a decline in immunization rates could be devastating to the health of our nation’s children,” Jenkins said in a statement.
Autism is a complex disorder featuring repetitive behaviors and poor social interaction and communication skills. Scientists generally believe that genetics plays a role in causing the disorder; a theory that a mercury-based preservative once widely used in childhood vaccines is to blame has been repeatedly discounted in scientific studies.
Remember folks, this is a fictional series. Sometimes the whole “bad things happen to good people” way of thinking is too much to handle. We look for reasons and people to blame because the real explanation is too difficult to accept. However, please don’t forgo vaccinating your child, as it is a proven way to make sure they will never develop a myriad of diseases, because of some theory that has little, if any basis in fact or research.
From the Indianapolis Star:
Driven by solid sales of its antidepressant Cymbalta, Indianapolis drugmaker Eli Lilly and Co. today said fourth-quarter profits grew to $854.4 million and 78 cents per share, beating many analysts’ estimates.
Earnings jumped six-fold from the same period in 2006, when Lilly recorded income of $132.3 million and 12 cents per share as it took a big charge to settle claims with patients who said they were harmed by Lilly’s Zyprexa schizophrenia drug.
But showing how little harmed it was by that publicity, Lilly said Zyprexa sales were again No. 1 in its sales lineup, accounting for $1.27 billion. Cymbalta was next up with $628.3 million. Overall, its sales increased 16 percent to $5.19 billion.
“Lilly completed a very successful year by continuing to deliver strong financial results to our shareholders in the fourth quarter,” said CEO and chairman Sidney Taurel. “Our additional investment in sales and marketing helped fuel accelerated double-digit sales growth.”
This from her manager. Gee, ya think? The whole article is on WTHR, but here is and excerpt:
Barbara Walters says she has been contacted by Britney Spears’ manager and “very good friend,” Sam Lutfi, who says the pop singer has seen a psychiatrist.
Lutfi told her the 26-year-old pop singer “is suffering from what he describes as mental issues which are treatable,” Walters said Monday on ABC’s “The View.”
“He said that she has been to a psychiatrist and that she, I assume, is starting some kind of treatment,” said Walters, a co-host on the ABC daytime talk show.
“She has been having mood swings. She’s been having trouble sleeping, and also she is in touch with her mother – ’cause we had heard she wasn’t – and her mother has been very supportive of whatever it is that Britney is going to do,” Walters said.
Lutfi has been staying with Spears constantly, “and he got in touch with us,” Walters said. “I can’t vouch for this, he seemed to be very knowledgeable and he certainly was very nice.”
Spears’ attorney, Sorrell Trope, didn’t immediately return a phone call seeking comment Monday. Spears’ spokeswoman at Jive Records, Gina Orr, didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment.
From a Bloomberg report, via the Indianapolis Star
INDIANAPOLIS — Eli Lilly and Co.
‘s antidepressant Cymbalta exceeded $2 billion in global sales
last year, Chief Executive Officer Sidney Taurel said. That would represent at least a 52 percent increase from the $1.32 billion reported in 2006, when Cymbalta was Lilly’s third-best-selling product globally. The drug is intended to replace revenue lost to generic competitors for the antipsychotic Zyprexa, Lilly’s top-selling drug, when it loses patent protection in 2011. “Cymbalta is growing very, very fast,” Taurel said Friday in Davos, Switzerland, where he is attending the World Economic Forum
. “It will be bigger than Zyprexa before Zyprexa loses its patent.” (Bloomberg)
The Blogmeister agrees with Mr. Taurel. They just keep finding new uses for this drug. I recently heard some physicians have found it very useful in the treatment of pain managment. New uses equal more prescriptions which equal more sales.
Last night I was flipping channels between the Democratic debate and a PBS documentary on lobotomies. Seriously, I was, I’m not just making that up for some punch line.
First, the debate. Because I was switching channels, I obviously didn’t get to see the whole thing. BUT WOW! Can Hillary and Barak be more hateful toward each other? On one hand it was entertaining to watch…sort of like a schoolyard fight, but on the other hand, has the Democratic party really sunk so low that two out of the three top contenders have to interrupt each other so much that they can’t even carry on a civilized conversation? Someone needs to remind these two it was a debate, not an argument. There is a distinction there. The first is an exchange of ideas with mutual respect where, at the end, two people can agree to disagree. The second, well, looked a lot like what we had last night. Oh, and John Edwards didn’t come put looking too good either. He appeared to agree with whoever had the best “gotcha” or the most applause. All the time though, never getting his hands dirty. If I continue with the schoolyard fight analogy, he is the kid in the back, yelling the loudest, but never putting himself out there to either throw a punch or take one in the gut. Some would say that is smart, but where I went to school we had a rather unflattering name for people who did that.
Next up, Lobotomies. Wow, what an interesting, if not gut wrenching show from PBS’s American Experience. Everything anyone wanted to know about the procedure was presented in detail. I have to admit, at times, I was glad to flip over to the debate as descriptions, pictures, and video were presented about the procedure. It’s one thing to academically study something from the psychiatric past, but another to have it so blatantly explained. I’d recommend watching it if your in the field, although ever being confronted with someone who had one is rare nowadays (they aren’t performed anymore). Luckily, if you follow this link, PBS is promising to allow the show to be viewed online in a few days.