Generic drug companies, executives slapped with price-fixing lawsuit

Generic prescription medicines.

(CNN)A coalition of 44 states filed a lawsuit alleging that 20 major drug manufacturers conspired to artificially inflate and manipulate the prices of more than 100 generic drugs.

Drugs named in the lawsuit account for billions of dollars in the United States. They include treatments for cancer, HIV, diabetes, epilepsy and depression, according to a statement released Sunday by the office of Connecticut Attorney General William Tong.
The complaint says that Teva, Sandoz, Mylan, Pfizer and 16 other drug manufacturers schemed to increase prices affecting Medicare and Medicaid, the health insurance market and individuals. The lawsuit also names 15 senior executive defendants responsible for sales, marketing, pricing and operations.
    The lawsuit specifies that one report found that prices of more than 1,200 generic medications increased an average of 448% between July 2013 and July 2014.
    "During a 19-month period beginning in July 2013 and continuing through January 2015, Teva significantly raised prices on approximately 112 different generic drugs. ... The size of the price increases varied, but a number of them were well over 1,000%," the court document says.
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