Pfizer Pays $2.3 Billion to Settle Drug Dispute

Dispute was over marketing of medicines for off-label purposes

To settle a dispute with the U.S. government over the marketing of medicines for off-label purposes, Pfizer has agreed to pay a record $2.3 billion, the company said on Sept. 2.

The settlement ends criminal and civil proceedings against the pharmaceutical giant arising from its advertising of four drugs, including the since-withdrawn painkiller Bextra, for unapproved purposes.

"Pfizer Inc. today announced that it has finalized a previously reported agreement in principle with the US Department of Justice (DOJ) to settle an investigation regarding past off-label promotional practices related to Bextra, which Pfizer voluntarily withdrew from the market in 2005," the company said.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009

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