May 15, 2002
Posted May 1, 2002
On April 16, the Florida Department of Health's Board of Pharmacy reached an agreement with PetMed Express Inc. and Savemax Inc. whereby the companies accepted penalties but did not admit guilt. The two companies were accused of operating an "alternate veterinarian program" that contracted with veterinarians to write prescriptions for animals they had never examined—a violation of Florida law. They were also charged with selling drugs not approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
According to several speakers at the hearing, veterinarians in other states have filed complaints against the companies, and the agreement may start a domino effect, with more states pursuing legal action.
Through the Florida stipulation, PetMed Express Inc. and Savemax Inc. agreed to unannounced pharmacy inspections for three years and one year, respectively; community service; and completion of pharmacy law continuing education. Both companies agreed to pay all costs arising from the settlement, to abide by FDA regulations, and to cease all use of the alternate veterinarian program. PetMed Express Inc. was also put on probation for three years.
Read more in the June 1 issue of JAVMA.