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Missouri executes inmate for 1993 farm slaying April 23, 2014

Missouri awarded $26 million in Medicaid fraud case

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster announced Monday the state’s Medicaid program will recover more than $26 million out of a more than $2.2 billion national Medicaid fraud settlement with Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiaries.

Johnson & Johnson is composed of a family of health-related companies, including the world’s eighth-largest pharmaceutical company.

The national settlement — which pitted states and the federal government against the pharmaceutical companies — resolves allegations of unlawful marketing practices to promote the sales of antipsychotic drugs for uses not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The U.S. Department of Justice also said the allegations include payment of kickbacks to physicians and pharmacies to recommend and prescribe the drugs Risperdal, Invega and Natrecor.

According to the Justice Department, the “resolution is one of the largest health care fraud settlements in U.S. history, including criminal fines and forfeiture totaling $485 million and civil settlements with the federal government and states totaling $1.72 billion.”

Koster said the settlement returns health-care dollars to Missouri.

“It also serves as a reminder to pharmaceutical companies to market their drugs for FDA-approved product label uses only,” he said.

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