Rite Aid Settles Controlled Substances Act Allegations

The settlement involves $834,200 in civil penalties and is part of an agreement reached to resolve allegations that certain Rite Aid pharmacies in Los Angeles dispensed and/or recorded controlled substances using a medical practitioner's incorrect or invalid DEA registration number.

Rite Aid Corporation has paid $834,200 in civil penalties to the United States to settle allegations that it violated the Controlled Substances Act, the Drug Enforcement Administration announced March 9. The settlement is part of an agreement reached to resolve allegations that certain Rite Aid pharmacies in Los Angeles dispensed and/or recorded controlled substances using a medical practitioner's incorrect or invalid DEA registration number.

According to the DEA announcement, an investigation revealed incorrect or invalid registration numbers were used at least 1,298 times as a result of Rite Aid's failure to adequately maintain its internal database, and the settlement resolves allegations that Rite Aid pharmacies dispensed on at least 63 occasions prescriptions for controlled substances written by a practitioner whose DEA registration number had been revoked by the DEA for cause.

"This settlement demonstrates DEA's commitment to monitoring and holding accountable all potential sources of diversion for controlled substances and maintaining the safety of our communities," said DEA Special Agent-in-Charge Steve Comer. Before entering into the agreement, Rite Aid implemented a DEA registration validation program designed to verify DEA registration numbers for medical professionals who prescribe controlled substances.

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