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Pfizer to pay record penalty in improper marketing case

Washington Post, September 3, 2009

The Obama administration put drugmakers on notice that they will be forced to atone for improper marketing practices as prosecutors unveiled a record $2.3 billion settlement with Pfizer. Officials at the departments of Justice and Health and Human Services called the agreement a cautionary example of their strategy to team up with states to police errant healthcare businesses. The Pfizer unit Pharmacia & Upjohn pleaded guilty to a single felony charge that accused the company of marketing its anti-inflammatory drug Bextra for broader uses and higher dosages than those approved by the Food and Drug Administration.