Massachusetts weighs new rules for compounding pharmacies
by Associated Press Wire
April 02, 2013 10:47 AM | 360 views | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print
In this Oct. 16, 2012 file photo a Food and Drug Administration Agent stands at the doorway of New England Compounding Center in Framingham, Mass. Michigan's attorney general announced Tuesday, March 26, 2013 he is seeking a criminal investigation into the deaths of 17 residents from contaminated steroids supplied by a Massachusetts pharmaceutical company. He said Michigan leads the country in patients affected by the fungal meningitis outbreak. (AP Photo/Bill Sikes, File)
In this Oct. 16, 2012 file photo a Food and Drug Administration Agent stands at the doorway of New England Compounding Center in Framingham, Mass. Michigan's attorney general announced Tuesday, March 26, 2013 he is seeking a criminal investigation into the deaths of 17 residents from contaminated steroids supplied by a Massachusetts pharmaceutical company. He said Michigan leads the country in patients affected by the fungal meningitis outbreak. (AP Photo/Bill Sikes, File)
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In this Oct. 9, 2012 file photo provided by the Minnesota Department of Health are vials of the injectable steroid product in Minneapolis made by New England Compounding Center implicated in a fungal meningitis outbreak. Michigan's attorney general announced Tuesday, March 26, 2013 he is seeking a criminal investigation into the deaths of 17 residents from contaminated steroids supplied by a Massachusetts pharmaceutical company. He said Michigan leads the country in patients affected by the fungal meningitis outbreak. (AP Photo/Minnesota Department of Health, File)
In this Oct. 9, 2012 file photo provided by the Minnesota Department of Health are vials of the injectable steroid product in Minneapolis made by New England Compounding Center implicated in a fungal meningitis outbreak. Michigan's attorney general announced Tuesday, March 26, 2013 he is seeking a criminal investigation into the deaths of 17 residents from contaminated steroids supplied by a Massachusetts pharmaceutical company. He said Michigan leads the country in patients affected by the fungal meningitis outbreak. (AP Photo/Minnesota Department of Health, File)
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BOSTON (AP) — State lawmakers are weighing changes to how sterile compounding pharmacies are regulated in the wake of a deadly nationwide fungal meningitis outbreak that was linked to a steroid distributed by a Massachusetts firm.

The Committee on Public Health has scheduled a hearing Tuesday on several proposals that call for strengthening oversight and licensing of the pharmacies.

Among them is a bill filed by Gov. Deval Patrick that would require compounding pharmacies to obtain a special state license.

The legislation would also create whistleblower protections for pharmacy workers and enforce new fines and penalties for compounding pharmacies that break the rules.

The committee will also hear testimony on general pharmacy bills.

More than 50 deaths and hundreds of illnesses have been tied to the outbreak. New England Compounding Center of Framingham shut down last fall.
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