Residents across Tennessee should be aware of the recent meningitis outbreak that has hit this state the hardest. The outbreak started after a drug company sent out steroid supplies tainted with a fungus. The company is called the New England Compounding Center and has recently voluntarily surrendered their license to operate in Tennessee.
According to reports, the Pharmacy Board of Tennessee has agreed to suspend the company’s license in light of the tragic drug contamination. This may have little effect on the entire situation as the drugs have been recalled and the company has ceased their operations at least temporarily, but that may be of little consolation to the victims of the outbreak.
Across the country, there have been over 200 people who have developed meningitis after being injected with the contaminated steroid manufactured at NECC. Of those who have gotten sick, 53 of them reside in Tennessee. Tragically, six residents have died in this state alone. Tennessee is by far the state most impacted by this medication error.
The contamination happened when the company was preparing drugs to be shipped out across the country. NECC, which is a compounding pharmacy, prepares approved drugs that have been individualized to a particular patient. At least one type of drug, a steroid, was tainted with the fungus that is causing patients to become infected with fungal meningitis which affects the brain and spinal cord.
Among other violations, the company at the center of the current meningitis outbreak is facing claims that they send out these drugs without receiving proper proof of prescriptions from doctors.
Source: Reuters, “Tennessee suspends NECC license after meningitis outbreak,” Oct. 15, 2012
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