CVS Caremark reaches RxAmerica civil settlement with U.S. Department of Justice
WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Caremark has announced that it has reached a civil settlement with the United States Department of Justice regarding its investigation into certain business practices of a subsidiary of Longs Drug Stores, which began prior to the acquisition of Longs by CVS Caremark in October 2008.
Pursuant to the settlement agreement, RxAmerica has expressly denied any liability.
The settlement includes a payment of $5.25 million to the Department of Justice, plus costs and other fees. These payments have been fully accrued for and will not affect the company’s 2012 earnings results. The investigation commenced in 2009 and has been previously disclosed in the company’s SEC filings. The company agreed to settle the matter in order to avoid the burden and expense of continuing litigation.
The settlement resolves allegations that, in 2007 and 2008, Medicare Part D paid claims related to RxAmerica’s submission of inaccurate pricing data to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for use in estimating prescription drug prices on the CMS website tool Plan Finder for certain generic drugs covered by a Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan sponsored by RxAmerica.
The settlement also resolves all allegations in a related federal qui tam complaint filed by certain Part D Plan members. These RxAmerica Plan Finder submissions were previously the subject of the CVS Caremark consent order with the Federal Trade Commission earlier in 2012, the company stated.
CVS Caremark has cooperated fully with the United States Department of Justice in resolving this matter, and RxAmerica worked with CMS on a corrective action plan to address any Plan Finder issues in late 2008 and early 2009. As a result of these efforts, in September 2010, CMS closed the corrective action plan, notifying the company that CMS had monitored the sponsor’s Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Finder submission performance closely and that it had consistently submitted accurate pricing data to CMS throughout 2009 and 2010. RxAmerica Medicare Part D plans were last offered in calendar year 2011.
Walgreens named official pharmacy of Detroit Lions
DETROIT — The Detroit Lions and Walgreens on Friday entered into an agreement naming Walgreens as the Official Pharmacy of the Detroit Lions. Walgreens also will be named presenting sponsor of the team’s Living for the City Health & Wellness community initiative, bringing preventive healthcare resources and charitable programs to disadvantaged and at-risk families throughout metropolitan Detroit.
The partnership officially kicked off Tuesday with the start of a flu immunization tour at the Walgreens store located on 6331 East Jefferson Ave. in Detroit. Lions’ Pro Football Hall of Famers Lem Barney and Charlie Sanders, along with current players Chris Greenwood and Kyle Vanden Bosch, will be in attendance to encourage fans to stay healthy this flu season and get immunized at Walgreens. Walgreens also will support the Detroit Lions Academy by providing free immunizations to disadvantaged students and support for an integrated health and wellness curriculum at the school.
“Today’s athletes are role models in their communities, and we look forward to working with the Lions organization to heighten awareness around flu season, diabetes treatment and prevention, and other important health and wellness initiatives,” stated Dave Long, Walgreens district manager for the Michigan south central region. “Walgreens and the Lions have rich histories and together we’ll work to educate and motivate Michigan residents to get, stay and live well throughout the season.”
The Detroit Lions’ Health & Wellness community program is a central component of the Lions’ new Living for the City initiative that is focused on sustainable community health, wellness and development.
“Building partnerships with businesses that want to truly make a difference in our community helps us accomplish our goals on and off the field,” stated Tom Lewand, Detroit Lions team president. “In becoming the presenting sponsor of the Living for the City Health & Wellness initiative, Walgreens is establishing itself in a meaningful way with both our fans and the community in metro Detroit."
As the official pharmacy of the Detroit Lions, Walgreens will also have camera-visible signage during games and events at Ford Field, on-site displays at select events and a mix of marketing rights and in-stadium assets and promotion at the Club level.
Walgreens has 155 stores in the Detroit area.
Consumer spending to increase for holidays; gift cards to be popular
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — More than half of consumers say they plan to spend $500 or more on gifts this holiday season, slightly more than what they planned on spending in 2011, according to PriceGrabber’s winter holiday shopping survey.
The survey of online shopping consumers, conducted from Aug. 31 to Sept. 12, revealed that 75% planned to shop with online retailers, 74% said they’d shop at discount stores and 49% planned to shop at traditional department stores.
Clothing and gift cards were the most popular holiday gift choice; 65% of consumers plan to purchase clothes, 49% to purchase gift cards, and 41% will purchase books, CDs, DVDs or video games. About 40% will purchase toys, 24% will buy food or candy, and 17% indicated cosmetics, spa packages or beauty-related gifts.
Consumers plan on post-Thanksgiving shopping; 33% said they believe the best deals would be available after Thanksgiving (up from 29% in 2011). Some 28% plan to shop on Black Friday, 23% will shop in December and 16% are targeting Cyber Monday.