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Contamination at Compounding Pharmacies Goes Beyond New England Compounding Center

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Do you remember the Boston compounding pharmacy linked to the meningitis outbreak from contaminated steroid pain injections? It was pretty hard to miss, and I covered it extensively the last few months of 2012. The owner of that pharmacy, The New England Compounding Center refused to appear in front of Congress and the government was forced to issue a subpoena. However, although we'd like to think that this is a one-time occurence, it turns out that more compounding centers have similar problems.

In an announced inspection of 40 pharmacies across Massachusetts, regulators ordered 11 compounding pharmacies to stop production altogether and cited another 21 with minor violations. The surprise inspections were in direct response to the deaths of 45 people who received contaminated pain injections originating from The New England Compounding Center.

The 11 pharmacies must write and submit a plan of corrective action to the state's Board of Pharmacy. According to regulators, 8 of the 11 pharmacies have done so, but they must implement their plans and pass re-inspection before continuing operation. Other states are taking similar actions in direct response to The New England Compounding Center scandal; New Jersey is considering legislation that would require compounding pharmacies to acquire accreditation.