By John Kell
A U.S. appeals court said two CVS Caremark Corp. (>> CVS Caremark Corporation) pharmacies in Florida cannot fill prescriptions for certain controlled drugs related to a Drug Enforcement Administration move to halt such sales.
The decision lifted a temporary, administrative stay that was granted to CVS earlier this month, at the time allowing the pharmacies to keep dispensing controlled medications after an appeals court denied the chain's request for preliminary injunction.
The case stems from DEA action that was taken last month against two Sanford, Fla., CVS stores that were alleged to be among four pharmacy customers of drug distributor Cardinal Health Inc. (CAH) that dispensed the pain drug oxycodone based on bad prescriptions.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on Thursday ruled CVS had "not satisfied the stringent requirements for a stay pending appeal." The decision comes roughly a week after an appeals court said a Cardinal Health distribution hub in Florida can't ship prescription painkillers.
In a prepared statement, CVS said it was "disappointed with today's ruling by the court," saying the company had taken actions that have substantially reduced the amount of oxycodone dispensed at the two Florida pharmacies.
"We remain committed to working with the DEA to do everything we can to reduce prescription drug abuse," CVS said.
-By John Kell, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2480; firstname.lastname@example.org
-Jon Kamp and Timothy Martin of The Wall Street Journal contributed to this article