screenshot of counterfeit Eli Lilly insulin tweet
On Friday, a counterfeit Eli Lilly account bearing a checkmark that caused many to believe the account was authentic tweeted, “We are excited to announce insulin is free now," causing havoc.

Fake Lilly Twitter Account Tweets “Insulin Is Free Now,” Temporarily Wiping Billions From Company’s Stock Value

The havoc caused by Twitter’s new policy on user identity verification struck drug manufacturer Eli Lilly last week when a counterfeit account bearing one of Twitter’s new $8 checkmarks tweeted, “We are excited to announce insulin is free now.”

The fake account was named Eli Lilly and Company, used Lilly’s logo, and had the Twitter handle @EliLillyandCo. Lilly’s real account also is named Eli Lilly and Company and uses Lilly’s logo, but its handle is @LillyPad.

The prank tweet was posted at 1:36 p.m. Eastern on Nov. 10 and remained on Twitter for several hours. Lilly tweeted late that afternoon, “We apologize to those who have been served a misleading message from a fake Lilly account. Our official Twitter account is @LillyPad.”

According to Google, Lilly’s stock price fell from about $360 to $346 per share within 20 minutes of the imposter’s tweet. It had risen back to $355 per share by mid-day Monday. Insulin manufacturers Sanofi and Novo Nordisk’s stock prices also fell and rose again in tandem with Lilly’s.

Twitter on Friday disabled its $8 Twitter Blue service. In exchange for paying the monthly fee, accounts got a checkmark identical to those Twitter formerly granted only to the accounts of celebrities and other “accounts of public interest” that Twitter verified were authentic. Twitter did not verify the authenticity of Twitter Blue accounts that got the same checkmarks, however. Tweets of Twitter Blue customers who paid the monthly fee eventually were to have gotten higher placement in replies and searches.

Lilly in July 2020 became the first manufacturer to impose conditions on 340B pricing when covered entities use contract pharmacies to dispense Lilly products. It is challenging the federal government’s declaration that its conditions are illegal and must stop or the company could face civil fines. Seventeen other manufacturers have followed Lilly’s lead and have imposed conditions on 340B pricing involving contract pharmacy arrangements.

Lilly waives its 340B pricing conditions on insulin if neither the covered entity nor the contract
pharmacy marks-up or otherwise charges a dispensing fee for the Lilly insulin, no insurer or payer is billed for the Lilly insulin dispensed, and the covered entity provides claim-level data demonstrating satisfaction of these terms and conditions.

Editor at Large | Website | + posts