CVS Settles with Alaska AG for $10 Million over Opioid Allegations

  • Alaska AG Treg Taylor has reached a settlement with CVS Pharmacy, Inc. to resolve allegations that the company violated Alaska’s Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Act by allegedly dispensing opioid-containing prescription drugs without first making sufficient inquiries into the legitimacy of a prescription.
  • According to the complaint, AG Taylor alleges that from 2009 to 2014, CVS did not implement effective controls or procedures that would allow pharmacists enough time and resources to adequately investigate potential “red flags” associated with opioid prescriptions. As a result, the AG’s office claims that CVS did not meet its legal obligations under both state and federal law to ensure prescriptions for controlled substances were legitimate and for valid medical purposes, thereby exacerbating the state’s ongoing opioid addiction crisis.
  • Under the terms of the consent judgment and settlement, CVS must pay $10 million to Alaska and implement or maintain a Controlled Substance Dispensing Oversight Program. This program must address the company’s compliance structure and include specific protocols for managing opioid prescriptions, addressing pharmacist judgment, diversion prevention, suspicious order monitoring, red-flag reporting, and handling blocked or potentially problematic prescribers.