You’re Fired: Forest Lab’s CEO May Be Banned from Federal Healthcare
As reported at Pharmalot, the CEO of Forest Laboratories received an unfortunate letter last week, demanding that he explain within 30 days why he should not be excluded from participation in federal healthcare programs. Banning Mr. Howard Solomon would prevent Forest from billing the government—every pharma company’s largest customer—and effectively end his over thirty-year tenure as CEO…The move to exclude Mr. Solomon apparently stems from Department of Justice accusations of fraud in 2009 related to Lexapro, an antidepressant. In a civil complaint, federal prosecutors alleged that Forest hid from parents and doctors the results of a study indicating that Lexapro might increase the risk of suicide in kids. Meanwhile, the complaint alleges, the company was promoting another clinical trial—financed by Forest, naturally—showing Lexapro’s effectiveness.