WASHINGTON, March 31, 2010 - "Nightly Business Report," a PBS news show, tonight included an interview with Erika A. Kelton, a partner with Phillips & Cohen LLP, in its story, "Pfizer Discloses Payments to Doctors."
Attorney Kelton discussed her observations about pharma companies' payments to doctors, based on her experience representing whistleblowers in some of the largest Medicare fraud cases involving drug companies, including the record-breaking case against Pfizer Inc. for its off-label marketing of Bextra. That qui tam case and a related criminal fine settled in 2009 for $1.8 billion.
"She represents whistleblowers who often claim companies illegally marketed drugs in ways that might harm patients," said the reporter, Darren Gersh. "Kelton says she sees cases where consultants never actually consult, or worse."
In the interview, Kelton said, "When that payment is made for a phony clinical trial, in essence, basically to get drugs in the hands of the physicians so he or she can prescribe those drugs to their patients without as much concern for patient health or safety or even clinical efficacy, then that's not legitimate."
For more information about Phillips & Cohen's record, see P&C's Successful Whistleblower Cases.