The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected a Vermont law that limited how drug manufacturers could use information about the kinds of drugs doctors prefer to prescribe to their patients.
The Court ruled in favor of pharmaceutical companies and data miners who say the law violated their First Amendment rights.
Vermont Attorney General Bill Sorrell says he’s disappointed with the results, but says this Supreme Court has frequently sided with large corporations.
Thirty-five states as well as consumers groups had supported Vermont’s appeal to the Supreme Court. Vermont said the law was intended to protect privacy and reduce health care costs.
The suit was brought by IMS Health care which argued its practice of selling the information amounts to a kind of free speech, and that’s prompted some organizations including the Associated Press to file briefs in support of suit.
Senator Patrick Leahy says the decision is another example of the Supreme Court’s decision to bolster the rights of big business at the expense of individual Americans.