A recent surprise inspection of Massachusetts specialty pharmacies found that many such groups did not meet safety standards. In fact, Boston.com reports that 89 percent of these compound pharmacies did not meet safety standards.
Deadly Impact of Contamination
The Department of Public Health investigated pharmacies after a Framingham group was linked to a recent outbreak of fungal meningitis. The tainted steroid injections from this group caused 45 deaths and nearly 700 cases of meningitis. In nearly half of the pharmacies, serious violations were discovered. These facilities were ordered to immediately shut down. Another 21 groups were cited for minor violations of standards.
Experienced Inspectors and Established Guidelines
Many health experts are concerned that this issue could pop up elsewhere. When pharmacies do not have sterile environments or follow safety procedures, medications can be contaminated at the expense of public health.
Massachusetts’ inspection policies were recently updated. Today, all inspectors are required have to five years’ experience and be licensed. Money was freed up in the state budget so that more inspectors could handle quality control issues. The goal was to protect people from tainted medications and outbreaks. However, not all states have such funds or inspection regulations in place.
Future Outbreaks Are Possible
The inspections found that many of the compounding pharmacies’ sterile locations did not meet medical community standards. Thus, drugs were contaminated. Today, there is little federal regulation of compound pharmacies. If mistakes continue to happen, there could be another fatal outbreak. Victims not only have to deal with the possibility of death but also further medical treatment. Some victims may even end up permanently disabled.
We’ll Fight for Your Rights
If you have been seriously injured by a defective drug or medical device in our area, please seek help of a Tampa personal injury attorney. Victims may be eligible for compensation for pain, suffering, medical bills, lost wages and more.
Experienced lawyers can explain how the legal system works, the likelihood of compensation and what to expect from seeking legal assistance. Call Abrahamson & Uiterwyk today for a free initial consultation at 1-800-753-5203.