GlaxoSmithKline PLC agreed to pay $40 million to settle claims in a class-action lawsuit that it improperly marketed the antidepressant Paxil for use in children. The suit claimed Glaxo had withheld information that the drug was neither safe nor effective in this age group.
The money will be used to reimburse health plans that paid for Paxil use by children younger than 18. During litigation, Glaxo claimed that Paxil was safe and effective, and denied promoting it for children and concealing information. Glaxo denies any wrongdoing or liability.
Other health plans are suing drug makers on similar grounds, alleging they withheld information that led the health plans to unnecessarily pay for drugs. The Paxil case is the first time a drug company has agreed to pay a settlement in such a case.