March 24, 2011
News Release 11-031
Inv. No. 337-TA-768
Contact: Peg O'Laughlin, 202-205-1819
USITC INSTITUTES SECTION 337 INVESTIGATION
ON CERTAIN VAGINAL RING BIRTH CONTROL DEVICES
The U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) has voted to institute an investigation of certain vaginal ring birth control devices. The product at issue in this investigation is the prescription drug NuvaRing®.
The investigation is based on a complaint filed by Femina Pharma Incorporated of Miami, FL, on February 25, 2011. Letters supplementing the complaint were filed on March 11 and 15, 2011. The complaint alleges violations of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 in the importation into the United States and sale of certain vaginal ring birth control devices that infringe a patent asserted by Femina Pharma. The complainant requests that the USITC issue an exclusion order and cease and desist orders.
The USITC has identified the following as respondents in this investigation:
Merck & Co., Inc., of Whitehouse Station, NJ;
Schering Plough Corporation of Kenilworth, NJ;
Organon USA, Inc., of Durham, NC;
N.V. Organon of the Netherlands;
CVS Caremark Corporation of Woonsocket, RI;
CVS Pharmacy, Inc., of Woonsocket, RI;
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., of Bentonville, AR;
Walgreens Co. of Deerfield, IL;
The Canamerican Drugs Inc. D/B/A www.77Canadapharmacy.com, www.medcentercanada.com, and www.tigerdrugs.com of Canada;
The Canamerican Global Inc. D/B/A www.canamericanglobal.com of Canada;
Canadian Med Service D/B/A www.canadianmedservices.com of Canada;
Panther Meds Inc. D/B/A www.panthermeds.com of Canada;
Canada Drugs Online D/B/A www.Canadadrugsonline.com of Canada;
Drug World Canada D/B/A www.drugworldcanada.com of Canada;
CanDrug Health Solutions Inc. D/B/A www.candrug.com of Canada;
Big Mountain Drugs D/B/A www.bigmounntaindrugs.com of Canada;
BestBuyRx.com D/B/A www.bestbuyrx.com of Canada;
Blue Sky Drugs D/B/A www.Blueskydrugs.com of Canada;
ABC Online Pharmacy D/B/A www.abconlinepharmacy.com of Canada;
Canadadrugs.com LP D/B/A www.Canadadrugs.com of Canada;
North Drug Store D/B/A www.northdrugstore.com of Canada; and
Canada Pharmacy D/B/A www.CanadaPharmacy.com of Blaine, WA.
By instituting this investigation (337-TA-768), the USITC has not yet made any decision on the merits of the case. The USITC's Chief Administrative Law Judge will assign the case to one of the USITC's six administrative law judges (ALJ), who will schedule and hold an evidentiary hearing. The ALJ will make an initial determination as to whether there is a violation of section 337; that initial determination is subject to review by the Commission.
The USITC will make a final determination in the investigation at the earliest practicable time. Within 45 days after institution of the investigation, the USITC will set a target date for completing the investigation. USITC remedial orders in section 337 cases are effective when issued and become final 60 days after issuance unless disapproved for policy reasons by the U.S. Trade Representative within that 60-day period.