August 31, 2001

AUGUST 31, 2001

CONTACT: Marci A. Alexander, Assistant Attorney General, Director, Medicaid Fraud Control Unit 207-626-8800

The Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) within the Maine Attorney General's Office announced today that Maine's Medicaid program will receive $35,285 in settlement of a multi-state lawsuit against CVS Corporation. The lawsuit alleged that CVS and Revco, a 2,552-store pharmacy chain that CVS acquired in 1997, billed federal and state health care programs for quantities of medication that exceeded the amounts that were actually given to customers. The practice is known as "short filling." Prescriptions are frequently short-filled when a pharmacy has a limited supply of a drug. The settlement covers the time period of January 1, 1988 to June 1, 1997.

The settlement also requires CVS to modify its pharmacy billing operations to ensure future compliance with applicable laws and Medicare and Medicaid rules and regulations. The Office of Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will monitor the company's future compliance.

Assistant Attorney General Marci A. Alexander, Director of Maine's Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, said, "This case is not about a ton of money, this case is about the people of Maine getting what we paid for. We are serious about it."

Twenty state Medicaid Programs and the District of Columbia recovered over three million dollars as a result of the settlement. CVS is a Rhode Island based retail pharmacy chain, which currently operates approximately 4,100 stores in 27 states and the District of Columbia.

For further information, please contact Barbara Zelner, counsel for the National Association of Medicaid Fraud Control Units, at (202) 326-6020 or Marci Alexander of the Maine Medicaid Fraud Control Unit at 626-8800.