“Immunex and Caremark CVS have a duty to disclose that Enbrel prescriptions filled by mail order may not be adequately refrigerated and that patients should check the temperature of mail order Enbrel upon delivery,” attorney Caleb Marker argues.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA (PRWEB) October 17, 2014
Long Beach resident William Bertram filed a class action lawsuit in Los Angeles against Immunex Corporation, an Amgen subsidiary, and CaremarkPCS Health, a CVS Health subsidiary, for unfair and deceptive business practices in their sales of Enbrel to senior citizens and disabled persons in California. Mr. Bertram is represented by attorney Caleb Marker of Ridout Lyon + Ottoson, LLP (“RLO”) in Long Beach, California.
The lawsuit alleges that Immunex and Caremark do not inform patients that Enbrel prescriptions filled by mail order pharmacies may not be properly refrigerated – even frozen or too warm – sometimes requiring that the Enbrel be discarded immediately. Mr. Bertram is a long time sufferer of severe arthritis who relies on Enbrel to alleviate his arthritic symptoms. As a result of Immunex and Caremark’s shipment of Enbrel at unapproved temperatures, Mr. Bertram has replaced several shipments at his local pharmacy at a cost of several thousand dollars.
“Immunex and Caremark CVS have a duty to disclose that Enbrel prescriptions filled by mail order may not be adequately refrigerated and that patients should check the temperature of mail order Enbrel upon delivery,” attorney Caleb Marker argues. The lawsuit alleges that Caremark does not have adequate policies or procedures to safely ship Enbrel by mail or courier in a temperature controlled manner, resulting in Enbrel being delivered at unsafe temperatures. Further, the lawsuit alleges that Caremark and Amgen fail to disclose that Enbrel delivered by Caremark’s mail order pharmacies may not be maintained or delivered in the FDA-required temperature range and may require disposal. As a result of these problems, the lawsuit alleges that seniors and disabled persons are faced with the choice of using a drug that may not work resulting in a return of painful symptoms or replacing the Enbrel at a cost of thousands of dollars.
Bioengineered using Chinese hamster ovarian cells, Enbrel is a protein that must be maintained in a narrow temperature range of 36 to 46 degrees Fahrenheit. Once Enbrel reaches room temperature, it should not be refrigerated and should be discarded after 14 days. The lawsuit alleges that many shipments of Enbrel arrive at temperatures outside of the specified range and therefore are either improperly refrigerated by duped consumers when either all or half of the 28 day supply should be discarded upon arrival. As a result, the lawsuit alleges that patients ordering a 28-day supply of Enbrel at a significant cost are being provided zero to 14-days of FDA-approved Enbrel.
One of the first bioengineered drugs, Enbrel is also one of the top ten selling prescription drugs in the United States with estimated annual sales of nearly $4 billion. Enbrel is very expensive, often costing $1,500 or more per 28 day supply. Enbrel is used to treat five distinct diseases: moderate-to-severe rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, moderate-to-severe psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.
Further information can be found at http://www.enbrelclassaction.com. The case was filed in Los Angeles Superior Court (No. 7010000163155814).