The U.S. Justice Department on Tuesday filed a lawsuit against the world’s biggest retailer Walmart Inc, accusing it of fueling the opioid crisis in the nation.
The lawsuit which was filed in U.S. District Court in Delaware, alleges that Walmart continues to disregard warning indicators from its pharmacists and retains filling 1000’s of invalid prescriptions.
Walmart “unlawfully filled thousands upon thousands of invalid controlled-substance prescriptions,” the lawsuit stated, including that “for years, Walmart kept in place a system that it knew was failing to adequately detect and report suspicious orders.”
Walmart was additionally accused of making a system that turned its 5,000 in-store pharmacies right into a provider of extremely addictive painkillers, relationship as early as June 2013.
Walmart’s “unlawful” actions helped “fuel a national crisis” and had “disastrous consequences,” stated Jeffrey Bossert Clark, the appearing head of the Justice Department’s civil division throughout a press briefing.
Timothy J. Shea, the new Acting Administrator of Drug Enforcement Administration stated in a press release “when pharmacies routinely fill illegitimate prescriptions, we will hold accountable anyone responsible, including Walmart. Too many lives have been lost because of oversight failures and those entrusted with responsibility turning a blind eye.”
Walmart rejected the accusation, calling it a “transparent attempt to shift blame from the (Drug Enforcement Administration) well-documented failures in keeping bad doctors from prescribing opioids in the first place.”
Walmart stated that “Justice Department’s investigation is tainted by historical ethics violations, and this lawsuit invents a legal theory that unlawfully forces pharmacists to come between patients and their doctors, and is riddled with factual inaccuracies.”
“By demanding pharmacists and pharmacies second-guess doctors, the Justice Department is putting pharmacists and pharmacies between a rock and a hard place with state health regulators who say they are already going too far in refusing to fill opioid prescriptions,” Walmart stated.
Government knowledge reveals that opioid habit epidemic has resulted in 450,000 overdose deaths from 1999 to 2018.
In August 2019, Oklahoma decide ordered drug manufacturing large Johnson & Johnson to pay $572 million in a landmark opioid trial. The quantity was later lowered to $465 million in November final yr. The case was carefully adopted throughout the nation as there are presently greater than 3,000 lawsuits filed by metropolis, county and tribal governments in the United States against producers, distributors and retailers of prescription painkillers.