Heavy fine against SRx for overcharging drugs to Indigenous Services

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Heavy fine against SRx for overcharging drugs at Indigenous Services

An SRx chain pharmacy in Saskatoon overcharged Indigenous Services Canada for hepatitis C medications, according to a decision by the College of Pharmacy Professionals of Saskatchewan.< /p>

Pharmacy chain SRx is fined $30,000 for overcharging Indigenous Services Canada for drugs used to treat hepatitis C at one of its stores in Saskatoon.

The scheme was discovered after an alert was given to the College of Pharmacy Professionals of Saskatchewan by a pharmacist from SRx Pharma Group in Saskatoon.

It is the largest fine ever imposed by the province's pharmacy regulatory body, according to the written decision of the college's disciplinary committee.

The committee writes in its decision dated December 27 that the maneuver was to mark hepatitis C drugs above the maximum prices allowed by the province by modifying the bills.

In December 2017, the pharmacist, named DM in the decision, contacted the College's Complaints Director about the matter. He also informed her of the guidelines he was receiving regarding billing patients receiving Hepatitis C medications through the Uninsured Health Benefits (NIHB) Program.

This federal program provides eligible First Nations and Inuit clients with access to health services that are not covered by other insurance or social programs.

According to the College's decision, SRx Pharma President Adesh Vora ordered the pharmacist to contact the drug wholesaler to have the invoices changed to match the maximum allowable cost of the prescription product in under the NIHB program.

The pharmacist resigned from SRx Pharma in January 2018, and filed a complaint with the college regarding billing practices at SRX in February of the same year.

The written decision indicates that a forensic audit by Indigenous Services Canada revealed overbilling between $73,795.40 and $265,458.28.

The federal department asked SRx Pharma to reimburse $73,795.40, which it did, according to the decision.

En addition to the fine, SRx Pharma was forced to pay more than $25,000 in legal costs.

CBC has sought comment from SRx and Au Services aboriginals Canada. But at the ministry, no one could provide an immediate response to the decision.