The owners of New England Compounding Pharmacy Inc., the drug supplier blamed for a nationwide meningitis outbreak that killed 64, according to Bloomberg News, has agreed to a settlement providing $100 million toward compensation for victims.
Meningitis is an acute inflammation of the protective membranes covering the brain and spinal cord, known collectively as the meninges. The inflammation may be caused by infection with viruses, bacteria, or other microorganisms, and less commonly by certain drugs. Meningitis can be life-threatening because of the inflammation’s proximity to the brain and spinal cord; therefore, the condition is classified as a medical emergency.
Bloomberg News has reported that the settlement will be implemented as part of a Chapter 11 plan, according to a filing by a trustee seeking approval of the accord in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Boston. According to the filing, Criminal investigations involving company insiders, 322 lawsuits against the pharmacy and 3,300 claims from injury are continuing. According to CBS News, The Company, New England Compounding Pharmacy Inc., based in Framingham, just west of Boston, gave up its license and filed for bankruptcy protection after it was flooded with hundreds of lawsuits from people who had received the tainted steroid injections.
The company’s owners are contributing $47.75 million. In addition, they will turn over about $20 million in tax refunds. The owners will give the trustee all the claims they could make under insurance policies, according to Insurance Journal, this will allow the collection of about $29 million. It has been reported that, the sale of a business owned by the insiders will bring in another $10 million.
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