The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear a case in which a Vermont law seeking to restrict the use of prescription drug data in the marketing of pharmaceuticals to physicians was overturned on appeal.
High court to hear prescription-drug data case
At issue is whether the Vermont law restricting such use violates the First Amendment, an argument brought forth by the original plaintiffs in the suit and the winners on appeal in the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York. The Supreme Court decision would settle conflicting decisions occurring in the lower courts regarding similar laws in Maine and New Hampshire.
The winners in the Vermont appeal were: IMS Health; Verispan (now known as SDI Health); Source Healthcare Analytics, a subsidiary of Wolters Kluwer Health (now Source Healthcare Analytics, a subsidiary of Wolters Kluwer Pharma Solutions); and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, according to court documents. IMS, SDI and Source Healthcare issued a joint statement saying they were pleased the court agreed to hear the case.
The losers in the appeal and petitioners to the Supreme Court were: Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell, Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas, and Vermont Secretary of Human Services Robert Hofmann.
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