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Crain’s Chicago Business reports that CVS Caremark “is fending off allegations that it bilked the state of Illinois out of tens of millions of dollars, just as the pharmacy-benefits giant vies for a huge contract to manage prescription drugs for the city of Chicago and other local government agencies.

“An ongoing whistleblower lawsuit against the Rhode Island-based firm says the alleged fraud took place from 2002 to 2005, when CVS Caremark handled prescription-drug benefits for 400,000 Illinois workers, retirees and their families.” Among the charges are that CVS employees violated the law by removing labels from returned prescriptions and then resold them, and that the company “fraudulently called state workers’ physicians’ offices and changed their prescriptions — switching from a brand-name drug to a generic, for example — in order to cut costs.”

CVS lost its bid to get the case dismissed on the grounds that the allegations were not specific enough, and continues to maintain its innocence in the case.
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