Company will pay US Department of Justice $465m for avoiding paying rebates to government healthcare systems

American generic pharmaceuticals giant Mylan has reached a $465 million (£360 million) settlement with the US Department of Justice (DOJ) over allegations that the company overcharged the government’s Medicaid programme for its Epipen adrenaline injector. The DOJ said the settlement resolves allegations that Mylan violated federal law by knowingly misclassifying Epipen as a generic drug to avoid paying rebates owed to Medicaid.

‘We will continue to root out fraud and abuse to protect the integrity of Medicaid and ensure a level playing field for pharmaceutical companies,’ said acting US attorney William Weinreb. He went on to commend Mylan’s competitor Sanofi for bringing this matter to the DOJ’s attention. Mylan has come under public fire and criticism by politicians, including presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, for drastically increasing the price for Epipen in recent years.

Republican Senator Chuck Grassley – who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee – was not impressed. Grassley, who has been investigating the rising cost of Epipen and its misclassification under the Medicaid programme, called the Mylan settlement ‘a disappointment’.

‘It looks like the settlement amount shortchanges the taxpayers,’ Grassley stated. The congressman noted that a government watchdog office concluded last year that US taxpayers may have overpaid for Epipen by as much as $1.3 billion over 10 years, and he said the DOJ hasn’t explained how it arrived at $465 million for a similar time period.