CMA Levies Fines Of £2.3M In NHS Pharma Probe

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has formally concluded that 3 pharmaceutical companies took part in an illegal arrangement in relation to the supply of life-saving medicine.

The investigation by the CMA into the supply of fludrocortisone, a pharmaceutical drug that is relied upon by thousands of patients, has resulted in fines totalling almost £2.3 million (US$2.9 million) and a payment of £8 million (US$10.1 million) directly to the National Health Service (NHS).

Fludrocortisone is a prescription-only medicine mainly used to treat primary or secondary adrenal insufficiency, commonly known as Addison’s Disease. It is paid for by the NHS and so ultimately by UK taxpayers.

On Thursday, July 9, the CMA found that the pharmaceutical companies Amilco and Tiofarma agreed to stay out of the fludrocortisone market so that Aspen could maintain its position as the sole supplier in the UK.

In exchange, Amilco received a 30% share of the increased prices that Aspen was able to charge, and Tiofarma was given the right to be the sole manufacturer of the drug for direct sale in the UK.

Following the agreement, the price of fludrocortisone supplied to the NHS increased by up to 1800%.

Full Content: Gov UK

Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.