Florida Attorney General Eyes Amgen Marketing

by Ed Silverman | Pharmalot
January 22, 2008

bill-mccollum.jpgFirst, the US Senate Finance Committee and then the New Jersey Attorney General want to know about allegations made by former Amgen sales reps, who have filed complaints charging they suffered retaliation after resisting orders to promote Enbrel off-label and pull patient files from physician offices.

Now, the Florida Attorney General, Bill McCollum, is also interested. One of the lawyers in his office is scheduled to speak this week with both former Amgen sales reps, according to Lydia Cotz, the attorney for the reps. At issue is the interplay between sales reps and docs, a hot topic as regulators, legislators and law enforcement officials increasingly scrutinize pharma’s marketing practices. In Amgen’s case, the former sales reps say they were instructed to use allegedly improper tactics to boost scrips for Enbrel, which is used to treat moderate to severe psoriasis, among other things.

enbrel-4.jpg

A spokeswoman for the Florida AG wouldn’t comment on the planned interviews, but did send us this note: “Our office is aware of the issues surrounding Enbrel and has been monitoring the situation, but at this point, we have not launched a formal investigation or made any civil investigative demands.” We’ll let you know if his office follows the NJ AG and issues a subpoena.