Japanese health authorities will soon make a decision on a possible penalty against the local unit of Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis for failing to report drug side effects in more than 3,000 cases that may have been caused by about two dozen company drugs.
The regulators would slap a 15-day suspension order on the firm, meaning the company could not sell most of its drugs during the two-week period. A spokesman said, "We haven't decided anything yet, but it should be announced soon."
The Swiss firm's Japanese unit declined to comment on Wednesday. However, the health ministry said that a decision was imminent.