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Utah nets $150K on drug settlement

Utah nets $150K on drug settlement

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff says the state will receive $150,000 from a national Medicaid settlement with a drug company.

Shurtleff says the settlement resolves complaints that Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp. marketed an anti-epileptic medicine, Trileptal, for other uses and paid doctors kickbacks.

The New Jersey company agreed last week to pay hundreds of millions of dollars to resolve civil and criminal liabilities and plead guilty to distribution of a misbranded drug, a misdemeanor.

Utah's Medicaid fraud chief, Robert Steed, says drug companies shouldn't pay doctors to prescribe drugs for unapproved treatments.

The East Hanover, N.J-based company is a subsidiary of Swiss company Novartis AG, the world's third-biggest drug maker by revenue.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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