Corporate Compliance

Pharmacy benefits manager claims system is compliant

Compliance Monitor, January 19, 2005

Caremark Rx, Inc., was forced to defend its product sales this week after the Chicago Tribune reported that the Illinois Attorney General was investigating whether the pharmacy benefit manager resold drugs that were returned by patients, Reuters reported January 17.

According to the Tribune, state Attorney General Lisa Madigan launched a probe into whether Caremark resold returned medicines to company distribution centers in Florida, Texas, and Illinois. Reuters quoted the Tribune as saying that most states prohibit resales because the drugs may have been damaged or tampered with.

Caremark was quick to shoot down the Tribune article, which also revealed that the investigation is sealed from public view because it is part of a state whistleblower case. "All Caremark products are sourced from licensed wholesalers--to suggest anything otherwise is preposterous," company spokesperson Gerard Carney told Reuters. "Caremark believes that its business practices comply with all applicable laws and regulations."

The Tribune based its article on a copy of a subpoena issued this month by Madigan's office. According to the Reuters report, the subpoena requests documents and depositions from the Chicago-based attorney who is representing plaintiffs in a different whistleblower case involving Caremark. The other case, filed in Florida, accuses Caremark of reselling drugs that were dispensed to consumers and then returned, Reuters reported.

Most Popular