Lipitor Lawsuit: Why The Media Is Treating The Accusation With skepticism
A recent article in the Wall Street Journal (“Should You File a Lipitor Lawsuit”) described a case in which an out-of-control sugar addiction led to the filing of a lawsuit against GlaxoSmithKline, the primary maker of the popular Lipitor anti-hypertensive medication. The plaintiff in that case, John Doe, had filed for bankruptcy protection in 2021 because he was unable to pay his outstanding credit card bills. His doctor had warned him that diabetes, coupled with hypertension, would worsen his condition and that the only way to avoid a medical crisis was to take the medication.
The company’s own internal investigation found that GlaxoSmithKline was improperly charging the plaintiff’s medical health plan for unneeded visits to its own office, as well as inflated levels of the recommended dose of its main ingredient, lancet.
According to internal company documents obtained by the Journal, one of GlaxoSmithKline’s consultants, fiduciary insurance specialist, analyzed the figures on the plaintiffs’ insurance application. He determined that the level of lancet should be four times higher than the maximum amount that the company sells it for, and that the charges on the forms were thus improperly assessed. The court found that this conduct did not constitute a violation of any laws or regulations.
Although the results of this investigation are not necessarily in favor of the plaintiff, who has contracted Type 2 diabetes and now wants to hold Glaxo accountable for his treatment, the story does shed light on the complicated relationships between doctors and their patients that constantly influence medical decisions.
Whether or not a physician’s personal judgment is reliable is often in the eye of the beholder. For many people, their experience with a doctor and the health care provider who treat them is the most important factor when it comes to deciding whether to accept or not a medical procedure. While doctors themselves often cannot control the variables inherent in a patient’s diabetes, they do have the responsibility to explain their actions and to be fully transparent in their methods.
Another interesting case involves the testimony of a former employee of J.D. Powers and Associates, Inc. who alleged in a lawsuit that the popular consumer report turned marketing and advertising outlet used deceptive and anti-business practices to recruit her.
As indicated in the story, the methods the defendants allegedly used targeted obese women looking for only one thing, a lower premium.
The company is appealing the ruling in the case, and an oral hearing is scheduled for later this month.
A recent article by CBS News suggested that J.D. Powers and Associates might benefit from a lesson in corporate accountability.
Perhaps the lesson here is to always pay attention to how the media covers a story. And keep an eye out for lawsuits.
(The Lipitor lawsuit is currently the third legal case of its kind in recent history. In a July 9th press release, lawyers for J.D. Powers and Associates admitted “a few instances” of “foul play,” but declined to comment on any other claims. However, a representative from the law firm did tell the news station, “There is definitely a perception among some professionals that this particular company may have engaged in conduct that may be seen as improper.”