Former Regulator Calls For More Oversight Of Compounding Pharmacies
WBUR - 10/16/2012
BOSTON — In the ongoing fungal meningitis outbreak tied to a Framingham pharmacy, federal health officials now warn that anyone given an injectable drug made by the pharmacy could be at risk for infection. 14,000 people were already considered to be at risk in the outbreak after receiving injectable steroids made by the New England Compounding Center. 15 people have died in the outbreak and more than 200 people have become ill.
Health officials are now telling doctors to warn patients of the new risks, after three new cases of infection are believed to have been caused by products other than the suspected steroid.
The outbreak has raised questions about the little known sector of “compounding pharmacies,” which take medications and personalize them for individual patients. For a look at the industry’s regulations and oversight, Morning Edition host Bob Oakes spoke with a former member of the Massachusetts Board of Pharmacy, Bill Gouveia. He currently teaches at the Northeastern University School of Pharmacy.