March 13, 2012

American Consumer Institute Distributes Compilation of Documents Expressing Concern about ESI/Medco Merger

Organization Urges People to Stand Up for American Consumers by Adding Voice


Washington, D.C. – The American Consumer Institute Center for Citizen Research (ACI) today released a compilation of documents expressing concern about the proposed merger between Express Scripts, Inc. (ESI) and Medco Health Solutions, two pharmacy benefit management (PBM) companies.  As the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) finalizes its review of the $29 billion merger deal, ACI is highlighting the volume of concerns being expressed and asking people to join the growing group weighing in on this critical issue.

The compilation is nearly 200 pages long and includes letters and opinion editorials from Members of Congress, patient and consumer groups and others expressing concern about the proposed merger.

“When you look at all of the various groups and individuals who have spoken out against this merger in one way or another, it is pretty staggering,” said Steve Pociask.  “If you ask me, it is pretty clear how this merger is viewed by those outside the two companies.  I hope that this is taken into consideration as the FTC finalizes its review.”

ESI and Medco are two of the nation’s three largest PBMs, and last year announced plans to merge.  The deal is currently under review by the FTC and Congress, and a final decision concerning whether or not the deal will move forward is expected soon. 

If the merger is approved, it is clear what would result: pharmacies would be driven out of the market altogether.  That would further encourage PBMs to engage in self-dealing, favoring their own mail-order services over competitive pharmacies.  Thus, consumer choice and access to pharmacies would be diminished.

“We at ACI believe that approving this mega-PBM merger and combining two of the nation’s largest PBMs would only exacerbate the conflicts of interest and concentration of market power that already exist in the PBM industry.  This would in no way benefit consumers,” Pociask continued.  “For these reasons, the Institute is strongly opposed to the Express Scripts-Medco merger, and we encourage people to add their voice to the mix and do what they can do make sure it is stopped.” 

To view the compilation of documents, click here.

ACI is a nonprofit (501c3) educational and research institute.  For more information, visit