THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – A federal judge dismissed Amgen Inc. (AMGN)'s complaint against Medicare that sought to stop the agency from lowering the reimbursement rate for the company's anemia drug Aranesp, Amgen announced.
The reimbursement rate cut could cost the company more than $100 million in annual sales, Amgen had said in court papers. It would make Aranesp more expensive for hospital outpatient treatment than rival Johnson & Johnson's anemia drug Procrit.
The world's largest biotechnology company said it was considering how to respond to the ruling Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan in Washington.
The court determined that Amgen lacked standing to bring the complaint against the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Department of Health and Human Services, Amgen said. The company filed the suit last month.
The reimbursement cut is scheduled to take effect Jan. 1. The hospital outpatient business covered by Medicare accounted for 10 percent of Aranesp sales in 2002.
Aranesp and Procrit are used to treat anemia in patients suffering from kidney disease and for cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.