CVS Drug Stores: Friend or Foe?


Both CVS Pharmacy drug stores in Davis have sold over-the-counter drug products substantially past their expiration dates. Last year, while shopping at the CVS store in west Davis, I was ready to purchase a six month supply of allergy pills until I looked at the expiration date. The six month supply was going to expire in one week. 


In late November 2010, when I had a head cold, I purchased a 60-day supply of Aspirin from the CVS in east Davis.  After I got home, I looked at the expiration date — October 2010.  


Michael J. DeAngelis, corporate Director of Public Relations for CVS in Rhode Island stated in an email to me that “We have a clear product removal policy in place at all of our stores to help ensure that items are removed from store shelves before they reach their expiration dates.”


It is obvious that CVS’s “policy” does not  jibe with its practice — how can a six month supply of allergy pills be still on the shelf one week prior to its expiration date?  


To find out more, I googled “CVS expired drugs” and found an astounding 97,300 hits, including accounts about lawsuits in several states, including California, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and New York.  In one case, the state of Connecticut reported that CVS was selling expired items including cough and allergy medicine, baby formula, and even milk, eggs and yogurt past their expiration date. Some of these lawsuits were from two to three years ago. Yet CVS continues with its anti-consumer practice. Why?


There is speculation in media articles, including Newsweek, that it is cheaper for CVS to pay a fine in court  than to pay its staff to pull expired products.  In the meantime, CVS makes a profit from selling expired products, jeopardizing the health and safety of anyone who uses CVS products.


The CVS stores in Davis need to end their practice of placing profits above health and safety.  We should ask ourselves, is CVS, based in Rhode Island, the type of corporate friend we desire in Davis?

Have you had similar problems?


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1 Comment

  1. E Roberts Musser

    See following websites:

    And the list goes on. Stores selling expired products is nothing new. Apparently Rite-Aid has been caught at it too.

    From another website on consumer law in CA:
    “Although California law does not explicitly prohibit the sale of certain expired products, federal laws require that products contain expiration dates. The attorney general asserts that placing expired items on its shelves violates false advertising and unfair business practices statues because CVS Pharmacy falsely implies that its products meet national quality control standards.”

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