Cuomo: Two area CVS stores stocked expired drugs

Two local drug stores are stocking expired medicine, says the state Attorney General's office.

The office has issued a report alleging 142 CVS and 112 Rite Aid stores across the state have expired products on their shelves. Four of those stores are in the Capital District and two of them lie in Schenectady and Saratoga Counties.

A CVS at 6 Kendall Road in the Shops at Malta was said to have bottles of CVS Daytime Cold Relief that expired in December 2007, and a CVS at 1476 Altamont Avenue, Schenectady, in the Hannaford Plaza, carried CVS Nighttime Cold Relief with a July 2007 expiration date.

Statewide, undercover investigators were able to purchase more than 600 expired products from stores. Sixty percent of CVS stores visited, and 43 percent of Rite Aid stores, stocked expired goods, according to the report. Most purchases were made during the month of March.

Managers in both area stores refused to comment, but CVS's corporate office did release the following statement:

We value the trust our customers have placed in us to sell them products that are safe and effective and the findings of New York's Attorney General are unacceptable to us. We contacted the Attorney General's office last week about their findings and are scheduled to discuss this matter with them this week.

Our policy is to remove items before they go beyond the expiration date. In the event expired product is discovered, the proper procedure is to remove the item from the shelf immediately. We are working aggressively to ensure that our review and removal procedures are followed consistently in all of our stores."

In a mandatory five-day notice letter to the two companies, Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said his office would be taking legal action against CVS and Rite Aid. "Families across New York state buy products from these establishments assuming that they're coming from a safe, reputable source," said Cuomo in a written statement.

A full list of all offending stores and the products they sold can be found at www.oag.state.ny.us.""

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