New York, California and Washington state have been sued by drug store groups who say their members were underpaid in Medicaid payments for prescription drugs. Reuters
: "The National Association of Chain Drug Stores, the National Community Pharmacists Association and other smaller groups said in a statement that the states had not adjusted their reimbursement rates to reflect the new 'average wholesale price' for drugs, which was set on Sept. 26." A lawyer for the group says his clients could lose as much as $200 million annually over the reimbursement rates. Walgreen, a major pharmacy, has threatened to stop filling Medicaid prescriptions over reimbursement rates in Washington state and Delaware (Gralla, 9/30).
In other pharmacy news, The Associated Press
reports: "A judge on Tuesday imposed $4.5 million in forfeitures on prescription drug company Pharmacia Inc. for misrepresenting prices and defrauding Wisconsin's Medicaid system." A jury said the company violated Medicaid law 1.44 million times in 10 years, though a judge later lessened that figure significantly to 4,578. State officials had wanted $212 million in forfeitures (Richmond, 9/30).