FTC Sues Surescripts, Alleging E-Monopoly

May 1, 2019

The Federal Trade Commission filed a lawsuit against Surescripts, alleging that the e-prescription giant created and then ruthlessly protected a monopoly through loyalty provisions in contracts with drug suppliers and pharmacists.

“For the past decade, Surescripts has used a series of anticompetitive contracts throughout the e-prescribing industry to eliminate competition and keep out competitors,” FTC Bureau of Competition Director Bruce Hoffman said in announcing the lawsuit. “Surescripts’ illegal contracts denied customers and, ultimately, patients, the benefits of competition—including lower prices, increased output, thriving innovation, higher quality and more customer choice.”

Surescripts CEO Tom Skelton said that the company was “very disappointed” by the lawsuit and that the company has cooperated with the FTC throughout the agency’s investigations. The company has already cut loyalty agreements from its contracts, he said.

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