Public Citizen criticizes Lunesta pricing
Consumer advocacy group Public Citizen has made Massachusetts pharmaceutical company Sepracor its latest industry target, criticizing the company over pricing of its sleep aid Lunesta.
According to a Bloomberg News report, Sepracor charges nearly $99 for a 30-day supply of Lunesta versus $87.99 for a 30-day supply of Sanofi-Aventis' Ambien, a primary competitor and the global sales leader.
Generic versions of Ambien sell for $12.99 for a 30-day supply, Public Citizen said.
The group also claimed Sepracor gained approval for Lunesta despite a concern about cancer risks, after a senior FDA official overruled the objections and the agency instead sought more information.
Sepracor told Bloomberg News that Public Citizen's assertions were wrong and that the FDA issued a "universal decision to approve this drug."
Sepracor is hoping Lunesta will achieve positive results, spending $100 million to market the drug and boosting its work force by 900 employees to help sell it.