Chesterfield pharma company to pay $30M in Suboxone settlement
Indivior reaches agreement with health plans over its opioid addiction treatment drug
Chesterfield County-based pharmaceutical manufacturer Indivior Inc. has reached a $30 million settlement agreement in a federal class-action antitrust lawsuit brought by a group of health plans over the manufacturer’s opioid addiction treatment drug, Suboxone.
The global parent company, Indivior PLC, announced the settlement Monday, and the plaintiffs filed a memorandum in support of the settlement agreement in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on Saturday.
Suboxone is approved for use by recovering opioid addicts to avoid or reduce withdrawal symptoms while receiving treatment for addiction.
In the suit, which has lasted more than a decade, health plans representing members in Virginia and 47 other states, as well as Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, alleged that Indivior violated state antitrust and consumer protection statues, resulting in the plans or its members paying higher prices for Suboxone and its generic equivalents. They allege that Indivior “engaged in an intricate anticompetitive scheme,” including price manipulation, a sham citizen petition and a delay through sabotage of the Federal Drug Administration’s Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMS) process to delay competition from generic versions of the drug.
The agreement will still need to complete the district court’s approval process, starting with initial approval from the court. Indivior expects to make the payment into an escrow account for the claimants in September.
“We remain focused on helping those suffering from substance use disorders and mental illness,” Indivior CEO Mark Crossley said in a statement. “Resolving these legacy legal matters at the right value helps us further our mission for patients and creates greater certainty for our stakeholders.”
Although Indivior has reached a settlement agreement for this lawsuit, the company faces a separate trial scheduled to begin Oct. 30 in a lawsuit brought by drug wholesalers that bought Suboxone from Indivior.
In June, Indivior agreed to pay $102 million to settle a lawsuit brought by 41 states and Washington, D.C., alleging it stifled competition.
In July 2020, Indivior entered a $600 million plea deal with the U.S. Justice Department, the Federal Trade Commission and U.S. state attorney generals, in which subsidiary Indivior Solutions Inc. pled guilty to one count of making a false statement regarding health care matters. A month earlier, former Indivior PLC CEO Shaun Thaxter pled guilty to a misdemeanor charge of violating the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act in connection with Indivior’s misrepresentations to the Massachusetts state Medicaid program regarding the safety of its Suboxone Film product. Thaxter was sentenced in October 2020 to six months in federal prison.
A spinoff of British firm Reckitt Benckiser Group, Indivior reported $901 million in 2022 net revenue. It has approximately 1,000 employees.