Report: Preliminary injunction to block ESI-Medco merger denied


PITTSBURGH — The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania on Wednesday denied a preliminary injunction filed by pharmacy trade groups in an effort to block the merger between pharmacy benefit managers Express Scripts and Medco.

According to a Reuters report, U.S. District Judge Cathy Bissoon, who said earlier this month she would rule "later" on whether to block or allow a merger between the PBMs, declined to issue the preliminary injunction, which would require ESI to divest or separate Medco. A decision regarding a permanent injunction has not yet been made.

As previously reported, the Federal Trade Commission approved the deal despite efforts from the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, the National Community Pharmacists Association and several other retail pharmacy companies to block the merger. Consumer groups, including the Consumer Federation of America, the National Consumers League, the National Legislative Association on Prescription Drug Prices and U.S. PIRG (a federation of 28 nonprofit, nonpartisan state Public Interest Research Groups), filed an amici curiae on behalf of retail pharmacy plaintiffs in their suit to dismantle the ESI-Medco merger.

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