Rite Aid was ordered by an arbitrator to pay nearly $123 million to Humana, one of the largest health insurers in the U.S., for an alleged scheme in which the retailer sought reimbursement for prescription drugs at inflated prices.
Many of the nation’s largest drug store chains and health plans have recently gone to court to settle such disputes. Last month, several Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans in different states filed a lawsuit against Walgreens Boots Alliance. Two years ago, a different group of Blue Cross and Blue Shields plans filed a complaint against CVS Health and its pharmacy chain.
The legal battles reflect yet another piece of an opaque and complicated pharmaceutical pricing system involving drug companies, health insurers, pharmacy benefit managers, wholesalers, and pharmacies. The system has vexed consumers and policymakers — and in the process, it has also made prescription drug pricing an increasingly controversial and intractable political problem.
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