Documents from the House Energy and Commerce Committee say that pharmacy managers McKesson Corp. (MCK) and Cardinal Health Inc. (CAH) shipped 12.3 million doses of opioids to Mount-Gay Shamrock, W. Va., population: 1,779 people.
So, from 2006-2014, there were enough doses of opioids delivered to the Family Discount Pharmacy for every resident to have 6,913 pills.
Letters from the committee beginning in 2017 show that the two pharmacy managers were shipping high numbers of pain killers to the small town, based on data from the Drug Enforcement Agency. The letters asked the companies to explain what steps were taken to ensure the drugs were not leaking out in the black market.
West Virginia has been hit hard by the opioid scourge. Data from the Centers for Disease Control show the death rate from opioids in 2016 was 52 victims for every 100,000 residents.
McKesson was the subject of stories earlier this year by "60 Minutes" and the Washington Post regarding the fight between the DEA and the Department of Justice over whether to bring criminal charges against the company tied to opioid distribution. The case was settled with McKesson paying $150 million in fines.
The company denied any wrongdoing in the case and said the stories were inaccurate.
News of the house investigation into the two companies did not seem to spook their stocks. McKesson was up $3.19 from the open at $151.42 while Cardinal traded up $2.22 above the open to $70.12.
It is unclear how the probes will impact the companies in court, however. The companies have been named in many lawsuits across the country tied to their alleged roles in the opioid crisis. Literally hundreds of lawsuits have been filed by states, cities and counties against opioid drugmakers and distributors.
Neither McKesson nor Cardinal responded for a request for comment regarding the federal probe.