Blumenthal subpoenaes Rite Aid

Keith Loria Aug. 25, 2010, 3:35pm


HARTFORD, Conn. (Legal Newsline) - Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal announced Wednesday that he has issued a subpoena to Rite Aid demanding information on price increases and changes in its drug discount program.

Rite Aid blamed the price increases on a new state law, which requires pharmacies to provide Medicaid and other state programs with the same prescription drug discounts that they offer consumers. Blumenthal claims Rite Aid made other changes to its Rx Savings discount drug program and then posted signs falsely blaming the increases on the new law.

Some of the increases included changing the price of a 30-day supply of selected generic drugs from $8.99 to $10.99, doing away with an offer of a 90-day supply of selected generic drugs for $15.99 and eliminating numerous discounts on brand medication, oral contraceptives and certain medical supplies, including diabetic strips for measuring blood sugar.

Connecticut pharmacies that offer discounts on prescription drugs to the general public are required to charge the same amounts to the Connecticut Medical Assistance program, which is funded entirely through state and federal taxpayer dollars.

"Denying discounts, and charging higher prices-and then falsely blaming the state-is both insult and injury," Blumenthal said. "Rite Aid should do right by its customers."

Under terms of the subpoena, Rite Aid is required to provide the information Blumenthal is seeking by Sept. 8.

"I urge you to reconsider this misguided decision-a decision that is particularly alarming at a time when many in Connecticut continue to struggle with both financial difficulties and inadequate prescription drug coverage," Blumenthal wrote in his letter to Rite Aid.

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