Expert legal advice from the competition lawyers

CMA consider appeal in phenytoin competition case

First published by Author on August 17, 2018 in the following categories: Market Sharing Price Fixing Price Hikes Pricing and tagged with | | | |

The CMA is considering an appeal in the phenytoin competition case after a Tribunal found that the CMA ruling of market abuse is incorrect.

The phenytoin competition case is one of the most pivotal cases of our time in terms of the cost of drugs to the NHS. A number of investigations and findings have been made against pharmaceutical giants for overcharging the NHS, putting huge strains on public finances, and the CMA’s intervention is vital for the survival of our public health service.

The Tribunal decision in the phenytoin competition case is a setback that the CMA is now considering an appeal for.

The phenytoin competition case ruling

The judgment in the phenytoin competition case states that there is much in the CMA’s decision that the Tribunal agrees with, but the ruling also stated that they find the CMA’s conclusions of abuse of market dominance were in error because the correct legal test had not been applied.

The ruling does recognise the importance of the case given that we’re talking about two companies, Pfizer and Flynn Pharma, allegedly overcharging the NHS for phenytoin sodium capsules. For those reasons, the Tribunal has confirmed the CMA’s Decision, save for the finding of abuse, but they have invited all parties to make further submissions, and they also confirm that their Judgment does not imply that no abuse has taken place.

If the CMA are able to apply the legal tests necessary in the case, an appeal may well be upheld, and a finding of abuse may still be on the horizon.

A hotly-debated topic

The phenytoin competition case is amongst a number of investigations and findings the Competition and Markets Authority has been involved in for market abuse and the overcharging of medication to the NHS. The case itself has been going on for a number of years, and a great deal rides on the outcome of this legal battle.

Any abuse by companies who intentionally overcharge the NHS because the need for the drugs is always there must be stopped, and pharmaceutical companies responsible for such behaviour must be properly punished.

Putting profits over the lives of patients must never be allowed to stand. We’ll continue to keep a very close eye on the phenytoin competition case, and it will be interesting to see whether the CMA launches an appeal or not.

IMPORTANT: advice on this page is intended to be up-to-date for the 'first published date'.

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