Costco Forced to Pay Over $11 Million For Improper Control of Pharmaceuticals

In a statement released on Thursday, the U.S Justice Department said that Costco will pay $11.75 million in a deal to revolve claims against the company’s alleged violation of several federal regulations. Some pharmacies within Costco stores filled improper prescriptions for controlled substances, so says to the statement.

This deal comes as one of several settlements at the tail end of President Obama’s administration. In a statement, U.S. Drug Enforcement Assistant Administrator Louis Millione said, “This settlement demonstrates the accountability and responsibility that go along with handling controlled prescription drugs.”

As per the terms of the agreement, Costco acknowledged that between the start of 2012 and the end of 2015, some its pharmacies allocated drugs without complying with the regulations laid out by the Controlled Substances Act.

The Justice Department also said that by filling prescriptions lacking valid DEA numbers, outside the scope of a doctor’s DEA registration, and neglecting to keep up accurate dispensing records, the company contributed to a larger opioid drug epidemic. Los Angeles-based U.S. Attorney Eileen Decker said “These are not just administrative or paperwork violations–Costco’s failure to have proper controls in place in its pharmacies played a role in prescription drugs reaching the black market.

Annette Hayes, Seattle U.S. Attorney, said that proper pharmacy controls are instrumental to fighting the nation’s current abuse of prescription drugs. According to Hayes, Costco, and other companies that deliver high volumes of such drugs, have a responsibility to join the effort to keep them from reaching the black market.

To address these issues, the Justice Department said that Costco acquired a brand new pharmacy management system and also set up a triple tiered audit program at its pharmacies. The management system has been priced at $127 million.

The settlement also allows DEA official to conduct unannounced and unrestricted inspections of all Costco pharmacies registered with the DEA, for the next three years.

About News Team

Hi, I'm Alex Perez, an experienced writer with a focus on lifestyle and culture news. From food and fashion to travel and entertainment, I love exploring the latest trends and sharing my insights with readers. I also have a strong interest in world news and business, and enjoy covering breaking stories and events.

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