FORT LAUDERDALE (CN) – Humana is waging “an unlawful crusade to eliminate as many independent pharmacies from its network as possible” by terminating its provider agreements without cause, a pharmacy claims in a class action.
Intramed sued Humana on behalf of thousands of independent pharmacies nationwide, in Broward County Court.
Humana, a Fortune 100 company, sells and administers health insurance policies nationwide.
Intramed claims Humana violates federal regulations requiring that any insurance company participating in a Medicare Part D program, of which Humana is a member, must work with any pharmacy that meets Part D plan’s standards and conditions.
“Although Intramed has complied with all of Humana’s audit requirements, contract requirements, etc., Humana nevertheless abruptly terminated Intramed twice ‘without cause.’ Interestingly, during the last few years, Intramed is not the only local independent Florida pharmacy (in contrast to the large chain pharmacies) to have been terminated ‘without cause.’ Apparently, Humana is engaged in an unlawful crusade to eliminate as many independent pharmacies from its network as possible,” the complaint states.
Intramed claims that after providing low-cost prescriptions to Humana’s mostly elderly members for 8 years and satisfying all of the contract requirements, Humana terminated their agreement without cause in February 2010.
A few weeks later, Humana claimed that the contract was void because Intramed had been “operating like a mail order pharmacy,” which violated their agreement, according to the complaint.
But Intramed says the pretext of that excuse became apparent before the termination date of May 2010, when, “having apparently abandoned its first ‘without cause’ termination, Humana offered Intramed the opportunity to join its mail order pharmacy network.”
A year later, Humana terminated its agreement again without cause, this time without 90-day notice, Intramed says. And this time, Intramed says, Humana asked it again to be a part of its mail-order pharmacy, but under more “onerous” terms.
Intramed seeks an injunction and damages for breach of contract, deceptive trade, and tortious interference. It is represented by Kevin Love of Miami.