Retail pharmacies sue Abbott over Norvir pricing

NEW YORK Safeway, Walgreens, Kroger, Supervalu’s New Albertsons, and American Sales have filed a lawsuit against Abbott Laboratories, alleging that the drug maker abused its monopoly in the market for the AIDS drug Norvir, when it raised the price fivefold in 2003, according to the wallstreetjournal.com.

In the complaint filed Monday, the companies allege that Abbott “unlawfully extended its monopoly position as the sole provider of Norvir,” by raising its price 400 percent in December 2003. Norvir’s U.S. wholesale price rose to $257.10 from $51.30 for 30 100 mg capsules.

This is the second suit filed against Abbott. The company has already been sued by two AIDS patients and the Service Employees International Union Health and Welfare Fund. That suit is scheduled to go to trial in June.