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NCPA supports class action filed against CVS

NCPA supports class action filed against CVS

Doug HoeyALEXANDRIA, Va. – The National Community Pharmacists Association applauded a class action lawsuit filed against CVS Health, Caremark and Aetna that aims to recoup millions of dollars in wrongful back-end penalties for Medicare Part D prescriptions, otherwise known as pharmacy direct and indirect remuneration fees. 

“It’s payback time,” said B. Douglas Hoey, CEO. “Finally, community pharmacies have a chance to recover DIR fees that were unfairly taken. PBMs have been gaming the system for a long time, and it’s time to turn the tables.” 

The lawsuit, announced Sept. 27 by the law firms Berger Montague PC and Cohen & Gresser LLP, claims that Caremark – the largest pharmacy benefit manager in the country and a subsidiary of Fortune 6 corporation CVS Health – has been assessing pharmacy DIR fees in violation of federal antitrust laws and state laws governing contracts. The lawsuit also challenges Caremark’s agreements to arbitrate claims as being unfair and unenforceable. 

Hoey said that DIR fees have risen by more than 107,400% in recent years, a trend that is driving many community pharmacies to the brink of insolvency. 

“It’s very common for individual pharmacies to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in fees that they can’t possibly anticipate, and in many cases long after the point of sale,” he said. “Moreover, those fees do nothing more than line the pockets of PBMs like Caremark. It’s a mafia-style shakedown. We’re thrilled that community pharmacists have a chance to recoup some of their money.” 

NCPA will focus on educating its members about the suit and other ways they can recoup DIR fees that were taken from them wrongfully.


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