CVS, Walmart face lawsuits over homeopathic products

An appellate court reversed lower court dismissals of two lawsuits that have been filed against CVS and Walmart, which accuse the retail pharmacy chains of selling homeopathic products that have no clinical benefit next to drugs that do work.  

On Sept. 29, a three-judge panel on the District of Columbia's appeals court decided that "through their product placement practices, Walmart and CVS mislead consumers into believing that homeopathic products are equivalent alternatives to FDA-approved over-the-counter drugs."

The Center for Inquiry filed the two lawsuits citing the Consumer Protection Procedures Act in 2018 and 2019, but lower courts said CFI couldn't bring suits on behalf of consumers because the nonprofit organization isn't a consumer protection organization. The appeals court amended that statement to qualify CFI as a consumer protection organization. 

"The Court of Appeals rightly recognized that giant retailers can't just deny responsibility for how they present what are fundamentally worthless products," Nick Little, CFI's legal director, said in a news release

CVS did not immediately respond to Becker's requests for comment, but a Walmart spokesperson said the company disagrees with the decision. 

"We are continuing to review the Court's decision and are weighing our options for further appellate review," Walmart spokesperson Abby Williams-Bailey said.

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