Walgreen To Put Up $8M To End New Customer Payoff Claims

By Keith Goldberg (April 20, 2012, 3:44 PM EDT) -- Drugstore giant Walgreen Co. will pay $7.9 million to settle two whistleblowers' False Claims Act allegations in Michigan and California that it illegally gave government health care recipients $25 gift cards for transferring their prescriptions from another pharmacy, the U.S. Department of Justice said Friday.

The government alleged that Walgreen offered the gift cards — as well as gift checks and other promotional items — to members of several government health care programs, including Medicare, Medicaid, TRICARE and the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, when they transferred their prescriptions.

Walgreen's ads promoting the gift cards typically acknowledged that the offer wasn't...

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