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Bacteria, dirt, wrong dosage: the scary truth about CVS drugs

'17.06.2024'

ForumDaily New York

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Over the past decade, America's largest pharmacy chain, CVS, has recalled 133 over-the-counter medications. This is about one per month, which is several times more than any other pharmacy chain that produces drugs. Daily Mail reveals the horrific truth about how the company's drugs are made.

CVS Pharmacy, Inc. - American retail corporation medical goods. It is a subsidiary of CVS Health.

CVS has more than twice as many recalled drugs as its competitor Walgreens (they had 70 recalls during the same period), and Walmart had 51.

Why are there so many reviews?

The reasons for the recall of CVS drugs were contamination. medicines bacteria, incorrect dosage of the active substance in drugs, as well as mold, peeling paint and barefoot workers in factories.

Specifically, CVS eye drops, constipation medications, and cold and flu medications were recalled.

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The recalled products were manufactured under the CVS brand by companies based in China and India, as well as some corporations in the United States, including Tennessee and Florida.

In the first five months of 2024, the chain recorded 11 recalls, mostly of eye drops and cough and constipation medications.

Loophole in the law

Experts have repeatedly warned about generic drugs made by pharmacies, saying pharmacy chains have little incentive to ensure their quality.

This is due to a loophole in US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations. This workaround relieves CVS of responsibility for the quality of generic drugs produced by third-party factories, even if the products have a red heart and the words “CVS Health.”

“The best way to make a product at a low price is to skimp on quality. This is something we see repeatedly,” said Dr. Kevin Shulman, a medical expert at Stanford University.

A CVS spokesman said the chain, which has more than 9000 stores nationwide, prioritizes "good manufacturing and ethical sourcing practices."
The company says CVS brands are “designed to maximize quality and safety, perform as intended, comply with regulations and satisfy customer needs.”

Horrible cases

In one case in January this year, allergy medications made by an Indian company to treat cardiovascular diseases were recalled. FDA inspectors found stagnant liquid (growing yeast and mold) inside an air purification unit at a drug maker's facility in India, reports show.

Last October, investigators arrived at a plant in India that made CVS eye drops and found peeling paint and barefoot workers. An FDA investigation found fraudulent test results that made the plant's products appear safe.

In a third case in 2022, CVS recalled magnesium citrate tablets used for constipation because they were found to be contaminated with germs. They were made by Vi-Jon from Tennessee.

In a fourth case in 2019, FDA inspectors found that a Florida factory producing children's cough syrup used water contaminated with bacteria. Such drugs can be fatal to children with weakened immune systems.

Inspectors found that the now-defunct company, Unipharma LLC, ignored test results that detected the presence of bacteria.

The discovery led to a recall of all of the company's over-the-counter products, including a cherry-flavored children's pain and fever reducer, a berry-flavored mixed children's allergy remedy, and a pineapple-flavored children's cough syrup.

That same year, there was a recall of CVS's own brand of ibuprofen tablets. Investigators found that the pills contained more painkiller than the label suggested.

Note that CVS sells more than 2000 health and wellness products under its own brands in the United States.

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