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CVS Caremark Update

NCPA Executive Update

Dear Colleague,

It was two days before Christmas 2008 when we first formally contacted the FTC about CVS Caremark's possible anti-competitive business practices and patient privacy violations. Our letter didn't produce headlines or provoke an immediate investigation, and probably didn't cause any sleepless nights in Woonsocket either.

But how things have changed: federal and state investigations, congressional hearings, legislation, billions of dollars in lost contracts, and growing media attention. A recent headline in Fortune captures the moment, "New Troubles for CVS Caremark." We've complied a roundup with the Fortune article and other developments with an equally evocative headline,
"CVS Caremark Under Fire on Many Fronts."

Our December letter was sparked by rank-and-file NCPA members who took the time to e-mail, fax, and call us with their counter-level concerns about what they saw happening to their practices and their patients. It was the weight of those personal testaments that eventually resulted in the ongoing FTC investigation.

Their importance can't be over emphasized, and neither can the importance of providing fresh evidence for the FTC to consider. Of late we've been getting calls from members whose patients are hitting the "Maintenance Choice" two-refills wall and are not happy.

The FTC really is looking for CVS Caremark tactics that hurt patients and competition—not necessarily those that hurt our bottom line. The FTC is especially interested in examples that involve patients in Part D plans.

One particular bottom line area that the FTC is interested in is abusive audit practices by CVS Caremark. Contact us with any examples by sending them to

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Bruce Roberts, R.Ph.


Executive Vice President & CEO