After the fungal meningitis scare, in which 300 people have been infected, and 17 killed by syringes containing a steroid made by NECC, changes are being made pharmaceutical practices. Massachusetts has begun performing surprise inspections, and has subsequently shut down another pharmacy due to lack of sterility.
Dr. Madeleine Biondolillo of the state Department of Public Health said that Infusion Resource, a Rhode Island-based company, has been shut down for reasons of sterility. They make drugs that are released to various hospitals. The company has agree to contact forty of their patients and their doctors to ask them to return any unused medication, as the Associated Press reported.
Their Chief Executive Officer Bernard F. Lambrese has vowed to fix his company’s problems, including the crack in the window, and a leak in a refrigerator drain hose.
Dr. Lauren Smith, the interim commissioner of the state Department of Public Health, is responding to NECC’s negligence. Because of the outbreak, she is assigning five inspectors to review all compounding pharmacies. This is a change in the way such operations are normally regulated; normally they are inspected only at their first opening, or upon any complaints. After these outbreak of Meningitis, the Department of Public Health is proposing new regulations such as forming a commission to investigate practices and perhaps make inspections more systematic and regular.