Restraining Order Allows Two Florida CVS Pharmacies to Keep Selling Controlled Drugs

A federal judge has granted CVS a temporary restraining order, which will allow the company to continue to sell controlled prescription drugs at two pharmacies in Florida. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) raided the pharmacies last weekend and suspended their licenses to dispense controlled substances.

Reuters reports Judge Amy Berman Jackson, of the U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., said it was likely CVS will be able to show that the DEA did not establish the “imminent danger to public health” that is needed to suspend pharmacies’ registrations.

According to a DEA statement, the two pharmacies were “filling prescriptions far in excess of the legitimate needs of its customers.” While the average pharmacy in the United States in 2011 ordered approximately 69,000 oxycodone dosage units, these two pharmacies, located about 5.5 miles apart, together ordered more than three million dosage units during the same year, according to the DEA. The agency said the pharmacies knew, or should have known, that a large number of the prescriptions for controlled substances that it filled were not issued for a legitimate medical purpose, or were issued outside the usual course of professional practice.

CVS said it would suffer irreparable harm if it were forced to stop filling prescriptions at the pharmacies. The judge noted the company has already agreed to stop selling oxycodone and other Schedule II drugs at these pharmacies while the case is under review. The DEA suspension would have prevented the pharmacies from filling prescriptions for any controlled substance, including painkillers, stimulants and tranquilizers.

A CVS spokesperson said the company had taken steps, with the DEA’s knowledge, to stop filling prescriptions from physicians thought to be prescribing controlled narcotics improperly.

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    March 22, 2013 at 3:28 PM

    This has now made it almost impossible to get a legal prescription filled At any pharmacy in Florida now. I live in chronic pain everyday and go to the doctor every month and have for 8 years. I never had any problem getting my medication before, but now the DEA is treating the pharmacies and pharmacist and doctors like drug dealers. And have the DEA is now even stopping the medicine the pharmacies order from making it. They have caused disabled people with chronic pain to suffer because no Pharmacy with fill a legal prescription out of fear and because they cannot get the orders in. The DEA needs to think just because someone is taking pain medicine doesn’t make them a drug addict. I wish the DEA would stop trying to be my doctor And pharmacist. I trust them with my health, not some law officer, The DEA Will never Win the WAR on Drugs. how much more money are we going to waist????

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    February 18, 2012 at 2:29 AM

    Any idea what this has done to the people that legitimatly need these drugs for cancer?..

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    February 9, 2012 at 1:28 AM

    If the DEA wasn’t able to establish, “the imminent danger to public health”, satisfactory to Judge Berman, I know many people in my area that would like to help her understand. My son can’t be reached for comment as he’s in jail again. I go to a parent’s and family member group of people trying to find treatment and recovery for their sick, suffering, frequently incarcerated addicts. Shall we talk about all the deaths? There’s a LOT of them all over this country and I’m hearing, “from 3% of unscrupulous doctors in FL.” Does the supplier notice where their inventory is going?

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