For Immediate Release
MADIGAN ANNOUNCES $1.86 MILLION IN SETTLEMENT FUNDS TO BE DISTRIBUTED TO CANCER CLINICS ACROSS THE STATE
East St. Louis – Attorney General Lisa Madigan today announced that her office has brokered a $1.86 million settlement agreement with makers of a prostate cancer medication over allegations that the pharmaceutical companies published inflated prices for their medication. The settlement money will be distributed to 19 clinics throughout Illinois to provide cancer-related services to low-income patients.
Joined today by administrative and medical professionals at the Kenneth Hall Regional Hospital in East St. Louis, Madigan announced a $130,000 grant to the Southern Illinois Healthcare Foundation. The settlement funds will help provide much needed medical oncology services for East St. Louis residents, more comprehensive cancer screening and help fund community awareness and outreach education concerning cancer. Funds will be used so that oncology services continue to be available in East St. Louis on a twice weekly basis.
“Clinics across the state provide vital services to low-income patients. These grants are aimed at helping to improve the services provided to cancer patients,” Madigan said. “My office will continue to fight on behalf of consumers to stop unfair conduct by drug companies.”
Madigan said the settlement agreement was reached with TAP Pharmaceutical Products, Inc., Abbott Laboratories and Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited. The three pharmaceutical companies produce and distribute the prostate cancer drug Lupron.
In 2005, Madigan filed a lawsuit in Illinois against the manufacturers of Lupron for violations related to the Average Wholesale Price (AWP) for the medication alleging that the drug makers fraudulently published inflated prices for prescription medications such as Lupron, forcing government programs and Illinois Medicare consumers to overpay hundreds of millions in drug costs.
Madigan’s office is distributing the grants to free clinics and federally qualified health clinics, which use a sliding fee scale for uninsured patients. Each clinic will use its share of the Lupron settlement money to provide improved cancer-related services for the low-income patients.
The clinics specifically provide screenings for early detection of cancer, medication and treatment, health education and other services, at little or no cost to the patient.
The 19 grants, ranging from $50,000 to $300,000, will be distributed to the following clinics:
Assistant Attorney General David Buysse is handling the settlement fund distribution for Madigan’s Special Litigation Bureau.