Big Pharma Purposely Misspelling Drug Names In Payment Data Reports To Hide Payments To Doctors


If you aren’t familiar yet with the shenanigans we’ve uncovered by Big Pharma to get away with literally murder all these years, here’s a great example of how hilariously obvious their tactics are when you see them.

From Pro Publica:

You’d think drug and medical device makers would know how to spell the names of their own products.

But when companies submitted data to the federal government last year on their payments to doctors, some got the product names wrong. Forest Laboratories misspelled its depression drug, Fetzima, as “Fetziima” 953 times — in more than one-third of all the reports on the drug. Medical device company Amedica Corp. sometimes called its Preference screw system “Preferance.”

While misspelling product names was an obvious, infrequent error, we encountered a variety of other problems. Companies, for instance, routinely recorded payments associated with a single drug under multiple names.

Take H.P. Acthar Gel, an expensive injectable drug used to treat multiple sclerosis, kidney disease, lupus and other conditions. The drug’s maker, Questcor Pharmaceuticals, logged payments related to the drug under eight names, including Acthar, Acthar-Pulm, Acthar-IS, Acthar-Rheum and Acthar-MS. The payments associated with each name didn’t stand out much. But when they were all added together, the drug ranked in the top 20 for spending on doctors.