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Swine Flu Scams Abound: Ct AG Warns

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal today urged consumers to shun the growing number of H1N1 flu scams, including bogus antibiotics and anti-viral drugs, as well sham devices and sprays that falsely claim to shield users from the virus.
Blumenthal said that federal officials have sent warning letters to more than 140 promoters of sham products. They include phony prescription drugs, “sterilizers,” fake food supplements, magic shampoos, facemasks, a “silver spray” claiming to protect against the virus and a phony “photon” machine that promoters falsely assert boosts your immune system, he said.

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Smart Choices: FDA Joins CT Attorney General In Investigating Smart Choices Bogus Healthy Food Claims

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal said that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) – today declaring that it will join investigations into false and misleading food labeling — will be a powerful enforcement partner against deceptive nutritional claims.

Blumenthal said he welcomes the FDA’s support of his ongoing investigations into potentially misleading national food label programs, including one that deems mayonnaise, sugary cereal and other nutritionally suspect foods “Smart Choices.”

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Novartis to provide CT VNA with flu vaccine

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal today announced Novartis Vaccines & Diagnostics, Inc. has reversed itself and agreed to provide Connecticut’s Visiting Nurse Associations (VNA) with their full requested supply of seasonal flu vaccine, as well as double the doses it will supply VNAs nationwide.

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Eli Lilly to pay $25 million for improper use of Zyprexa

Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal today announced a landmark $25.1 million agreement with drug maker Eli Lilly and Company for allegedly marketing its antipsychotic drug Zyprexa for unapproved uses, and concealing the drug’s serious side effects, for more than a decade.

Blumenthal sued Eli Lilly last year for corrupting physicians, pharmacies and administrators at nursing homes and youth detention centers as part of a massive illegal marketing campaign to promote Zyprexa for unapproved off-label uses, including for the treatment of children.

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Discounted prescriptions: where to look

Thanks to Janice Podsada, a talented former colleague from The Courant, we have a list of websites for consumers to check out for discounts or free medicine. In her Sept. 21 article, Janice suggests checking…

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Statin Safety: Business Week reports FDA asked to review safety of most profitable cholesterol-lowering drugs

Cholesterol-lowering drugs have been the most successful medicines in history. Last year, they racked up $33 billion in sales around the world. Just one drug, Pfizer’s (PFE) Lipitor, earned $13.6 billion. But there are serious questions about whether these drugs are being overused and whether they are as safe as most people—and doctors—believe. And now Congress is starting to ask those questions, too.

BusinessWeek has learned that Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), the ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, has sent a letter to the Food & Drug Administration asking whether the agency has sufficiently considered potential problems caused by cholesterol-lowering drugs (most commonly the class of drugs called statins).

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What if you don't have health insurance?

47 million Americans are without health insurance. If you happen to find yourself among the ranks of the uninsured there are still things you can do. Here are some great tips we’ve come across. Join…