NY bid to halt Alzheimer’s drug swap

Courtesy MGNonline

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York’s attorney general is trying to stop a manufacturer from discontinuing its drug widely used to treat Alzheimer’s patients. He argues the manufacturer is illegally driving patients to its newer patented drug to avoid losses from cheaper generic alternatives coming out next year.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman  alleges both anti-trust and state law violations in the federal suit filed Monday in Manhattan against Dublin-based Actavis PLC and New York subsidiary Forest Laboratories.

The manufacturer has announced plans to withdraw Namenda, which generates more than $1 billion in annual revenues, and convinced 40 percent of patients and prescribing physicians to switch to newer Namenda XR.

Schneiderman says the company is “manipulating vulnerable patients” to protect profits. The company says its new drug, taken once daily instead of twice, is better.

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