Missouri Will Receive Millions in Health Care Settlement

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JEFFERSON CITY- Abbott Laboratories has pleaded guilty and agrees to pay Missouri $1.9 million. According to a press release written by Abbott, the company illegally marketed its drug Depakote. It reached a settlement with U.S. federal and 49 state authorities, including the District of Columbia. The settlement results from a 4-year old investigation into past sales activities that began in 1998 involving this product.

Depakote, is an anti-seizure and mood-stabilizing drug prescribed for bipolar disorder. However, the federal and state governments alleged that Abbott laboratories marketed the drug for unapproved uses. These uses include treatment of schizophrenia, agitated dementia, and autism. Other Midwest news outlets are reporting Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster said this is the largest consumer protection-based pharmaceutical settlement ever reached. Under the care of a physician, patients are sometimes prescribed drugs for purposes not approved by the FDA. However, pharmaceutical companies cannot market drugs for unapproved purposes.