Wednesday, March 22, 2023
HomeMedicalUS Sues Ceremony Support for Ignoring Obtrusive ‘Crimson Flags’ in Opioid Prescriptions

US Sues Ceremony Support for Ignoring Obtrusive ‘Crimson Flags’ in Opioid Prescriptions

The Division of Justice filed a lawsuit Monday in opposition to Ceremony Support, accusing the pharmacy chain of filling lots of of 1000’s of opioid prescriptions that had “apparent, and infrequently a number of, crimson flags.”

Ceremony Support is among the largest pharmacy chains within the U.S., with greater than 2,200 pharmacies in 17 states. 

In its lawsuit, the DOJ claimed that Ceremony Support violated the Managed Substances Act by filling illegal prescriptions for addictive medicine. And when the chain sought reimbursement from federal healthcare applications for these prescriptions, it violated the False Claims Act as effectively, the grievance stated.

The DOJ alleged that from Could 2014 via June 2019, Ceremony Support knowingly crammed not less than lots of of 1000’s of prescriptions for managed substances that lacked a reputable medical function, weren’t for a medically accepted indication or weren’t “issued within the standard course {of professional} observe.”

Many of those prescriptions had been for extremely addictive and infrequently abused medicine, resembling fentanyl, oxycodone (model title OxyContin), alprazolam (model title Xanax), diazepam (model title Valium), zolpidem (model title Ambien) and carisoprodol (model title Soma). The grievance flagged Ceremony Support’s repeated filling of “trinity” prescriptions as particularly problematic. The time period refers to prescriptions for a trifecta of addictive medicine: opioids, benzodiazepines and muscle relaxants. 

Additional criticizing Ceremony Support’s prescribing practices, the lawsuit alleged that the chain refilled sufferers’ opioid prescriptions early, even when they need to have had loads of drugs left from their final go to. The grievance additionally stated that Ceremony Support crammed prescriptions for “extraordinarily excessive doses and extreme portions of opioids” that fueled dependence and habit, in addition to prescriptions from clinicians who had already been recognized as “writing illegitimate prescriptions.”

The lawsuit accused Ceremony Support of ignoring substantial proof from a number of sources — together with its pharmacists, distributor and personal inner information — that its pharmacies had been meting out illegal prescriptions. It additionally stated that the pharmacy chain deliberately deleted inner notes that its pharmacists wrote about suspicious prescribers, in addition to directed district managers to inform pharmacists “to be aware of every thing that’s put in writing.”

The case stems from a a whistleblower lawsuit filed in 2019 by two Ceremony Support workers who labored in pharmacies in North Carolina and West Virginia that the DOJ joined. 

Ceremony Support declined Medcity Information‘ request for remark, citing litigation.

“The opioid disaster has exacted a heavy toll on communities throughout the US,” Brian Boynton, head of the DOJ’s civil division, stated in a assertion. “At this time’s grievance is a crucial reminder that the Justice Division will maintain accountable any people or entities, together with pharmacies, that fueled this horrible disaster.”

The newest information from the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention reveals that an estimated 105,752 People died from overdoses within the 12 months ending October 2021 — the best variety of overdose deaths recorded within the U.S. in a single 12-month interval. A majority of the overdoses reported throughout the interval concerned artificial opioids resembling fentanyl, the CDC stated.

Final 12 months, CVS and Walgreens agreed to pay a $10 billion settlement to settle all of the opioid-related lawsuits introduced in opposition to them by varied states, cities and Native tribes. As a part of the settlement, the pharmacy giants didn’t admit to wrongdoing.

Picture: Stuart Ritchie, Getty Photos



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular

Recent Comments