May 24, 2017

2 Min Read
Tylenol Maker to Pay $33M Settlement for Tainted Drugs
The maker of Tylenol, McNeil-PPC Inc., agreed to a $33 million settlement over allegations of tainted products. Image courtesy of Flickr user jeepersmedia

43 state Attorneys General finalized a $33 million settlement with the maker of Tylenol, Motrin, Zyrtec and other common over-the-counter drugs, McNeil-PPC Inc., in the wake of allegations that the pharmaceutical manufacturer distributed contaminated products and unlawfully promoted them.

“Hundreds of millions” pf packages of popular brands like Tylenol, Benadryl, Pepcid, and Rolaids produced at McNeil’s Fort Washington, PA from 2009 to 2011 were recalled in response to reports of “product oddities” like strange odors and particles in some of the products, the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General said in a press release heralding the settlement.

“We’re proud Pennsylvania helped lead this national effort to ensure health care companies are held accountable when they mislead customers about the quality of the products they put into the marketplace,” said Attorney General Josh Shapiro, who spearheaded the effort.

A U.S. Department of Justice investigation in 2015 resulted in a $20 million criminal fine and asset forfeiture totaling $5 million after the firm plead guilty. The Fort Washington plant was closed following the recalls and later reopened in 2015.

State Attorneys General opened an investigation into whether McNeil’s advertising false, misleading, or deceptive claims in light of the fact that their products did not comply with federal good manufacturing practices.

The settlement includes restrictions barring “inappropriate” advertising of the company’s products and reporting and investigative requirements that attempt to create safeguards for consumers. Under the terms of the settlement, McNeil will provide the involved Attorneys General with information on wholesalers and warehouses that received the recalled drugs.

“This settlement requires safeguards to ensure states get the appropriate information they need to protect their citizens if they are any future recalls by this drug manufacturer,” Attorney General Shapiro said in a statement. “A large number of state Attorneys General worked diligently on this case to protect consumers, and that collaboration makes us safer.”

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