• Unsanitary Conditions Reported At Compounding Pharmacy at Center Of Meningitis Infection Outbreak
  • October 31, 2012
  • Law Firm: Lieff Cabraser Heimann Bernstein LLP - San Francisco Office
  • Jay Lindsay of the Associated Press reports on the government's criminal investigation into the operating procedures and conditions of the New England Compounding Center (NECC), the Massachusetts pharmacy linked to the fungal meningitis outbreak that has infected 338 and killed 25 people who received steroid shots for back pain.

    Preliminary investigations have revealed possible violations of state pharmaceutical license laws. The NECC shipped 13 orders of steroids suspected in the meningitis outbreak before receiving confirmation that the medication was sterile. Associated Press reports that "some medication was shipped as long as 11 days before the company received test results."

    Officials also uncovered unsanitary conditions at the pharmacy, including a leaked pool of water surrounding a clean room, soiled mats provided for workers to clean their shoes before entering a sterile environment, as well as visible "black specks of fungus in sealed vials of the steroids." The FDA report released today stated that officials discovered a "greenish yellow discoloration" on the surfaces and ceilings of rooms that were used to sterilize equipment and weigh active ingredients for drugs.

    To date, the fungal meningitis outbreak has spread to 18 states, with 338 patients diagnosed with fungal meningitis and 25 patient deaths from the meningitis outbreak. Learn the symptoms of meningitis and the legal rights of the injured.