Johnson & Johnson, New Brunswick, N.J., said it has been subpoenaed for documents on two subsidiaries' "bundled" marketing of sutures and endoscopic instruments in contracts with hospitals and group purchasing organizations. The information was requested by the New York and Connecticut attorneys general offices and the Federal Trade Commission. Joint marketing of disparate products, or bundling, is a controversial practice. Commonly, deeper discounts are offered when hospitals buy pre-agreed amounts of bundled products; however, bundling has been said to limit competition, ultimately raising prices. The J&J companies involved, Ethicon and Ethicon Endo-Surgery, are responding to the subpoenas, a spokesman said. There have been no allegations of wrongdoing, and no litigation has been brought against the companies, he said. J&J disclosed the subpoenas in a May 12 Securities and Exchange Commission filing. -- by Cinda Becker
J&J subpoenaed over 'bundling' of hospital products
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