Pharmaceutical distributor McKesson Corp. has agreed to pay a record $150 million in civil fines for failure to report suspicious drug orders for controlled substances sold to its small and independent pharmacy chain customers.
The settlement of a civil investigation was announced Tuesday by the Drug Enforcement Administration and on behalf of 11 U.S. Attorneys in 11 federal districts.
It requires McKesson to suspend sales of controlled drugs from distribution centers in Colorado, Ohio, Michigan and Florida for multiple years and is one of the most severe sanctions the DEA can level.
This isn’t the first time McKesson has had this problem. In 2008, the company agreed to pay $13.2 million in civil fines for similar violations, according to the DEA. Agents said that after the company developed a compliance program in 2008, it failed to fully implement the program.
“Accountability is key for all DEA registrants who distribute controlled substances; detecting and reporting suspicious orders is part of the equation,” said DEA special agent in charge John Martin in Sacramento.