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Business & Technology

18 cases of meningitis in Tennessee; company tied to outbreak suspends operations

October 4th, 2012 5:04 am by Associated Press

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. (AP) — A Massachusetts specialty pharmacy suspected as the source of a steroid that has been linked to an outbreak of a deadly form of meningitis says it has voluntarily suspended operations.

In a statement Wednesday, the New England Compounding Center said it was working closely with the state Department of Public Health and other regulators to identify the source of infection.

The company said that immediately after it was notified about the infections it initiated a voluntary recall Sept. 26.

Health officials say the outbreak has sickened 26 people in five states who received steroid injections. Four people have died. Eighteen of the cases are in Tennessee, where a Nashville clinic received the largest shipment of the steroid from the Framingham-based company.

The Massachusetts health department said it is collaborating with federal regulators and other states on the investigation. It confirmed the New England Compounding Center voluntarily surrendered its license to operate and has recalled the suspected steroid medication along with all similar medications it produced. The department said there have been no cases of the deadly form of meningitis in Massachusetts.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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