Alexander Presses For Answers On Meningitis Outbreak

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tn.) on Thursday sought answers on the current multi-state outbreak of meningitis from the Food and Drug Administration, the Massachusetts Board of Registration in Pharmacy, and the owners of the New England Compounding Center (NECC).

“This is a tragic situation that never should have happened. It is clear that compounding pharmacies need clearer regulatory supervision. Once the investigations are complete,” Senator Alexander said, “we will do what needs to be done to try to make sure something like this never happens again.”

Senator Alexander, along with a bipartisan group of senators serving on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, sent letters to the FDA, Massachusetts board, and NECC owners, seeking information related to the outbreak.

The Centers for Disease Control reported that 70 Tennesseans have been infected with fungal meningitis and nine Tennesseans have died as a result of the multistate fungal meningitis outbreak among patients who received contaminated steroid injections distributed by Massachusetts-based NECC.

Senator Alexander earlier this month joined Senator Bob Corker (R-Tn.) in sending a letter to FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg asking for clarity regarding existing laws governing oversight of compounding pharmacies like NECC and information about any inspections of NECC and actions taken since the FDA warned the center in December 2006.

In Thursday’s letter to the FDA, the senators write that the committee has questions “about how large quantities of contaminated drugs were distributed throughout the country, particularly given that the investigation has now expanded to include two additional drug companies with the same ownership as NECC, Ameridose, LLC (Ameridose), and Alaunus, LLC (Alaunus).” 

The senators’ letter to the Massachusetts Board of Registration in Pharmacy requests information “regarding the Board’s interactions with the pharmacy in question, in order to better understand the circumstances that led to the present outbreak,” the letter states.

In their letter to the NECC, the senators wrote: “We are seriously concerned about the current public health crisis involving hundreds of cases of fungal meningitis and other types of infections that has been linked to drugs produced by the New England Compounding Center (NECC).  We are writing to request information that will enable us to better understand how one or more drugs compounded by NECC became contaminated with fungi before distribution throughout the country.”


1st Tennessee Bank On Highway 58 Robbed On Monday

A First Tennessee Bank was robbed Monday morning.   At approximately  11:35  a.m., the Chattanooga Police Department responded to the First Tennessee Bank at 4430 Highway 58 for a robbery.   Officers learned that a white male entered the bank and presented a teller with a note which stated he had a firearm and to give him cash.  ... (click for more)

Bradley County Work Release Facility Set For Completion In September 2016

Bradley County Commissioners heard an updated presentation on the proposed workhouse release program which includes plans for a new $2.9 million jail addition. It will be designed by Cope Architecture.   The building and release program were approved by the Bradley Commission in February and are intended to serve employed, non-violent criminals currently occupying ... (click for more)

What Is #NoogaStrong

I've seen some recent posts asking exactly what Chattanooga Strong means. This week I have seen enough that I believe I can give you a definition of this glorious word.   As a city everyone will not always get along or agree. Often we may ask ourselves what is wrong with these nuts. Often we run across the rude, crude and ugly. But when tragic happens, we all come together ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Chanie's Puzzling Poem

Ronnie Joice was in a bar in north London when he spied a poem tacked to the wall. The more he studied it, the more it revealed and, suddenly, he was floored. I don’t need to tell you it has gone viral, cheering people up particularly in England, but it is fun to know it was written by an 11 th -grader at an all-girls school in New York. Chanie Gorkin first posted it on her page ... (click for more)

Former McCallie Swimmer Qualifies For 2016 Olympics

Sean Ryan, a 2010 graduate of McCallie, qualified for an Olympic swimming competition early Monday morning. His fourth-place finish in the 10-kilometer open-water race July 27 at the FINA World Championships earned him a spot on the United States Olympic Team for next year’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The race took place in the Kazanka River in Kazan, Russia, ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Football Club To Host National Semifinals Saturday

Saturday  Chattanooga Football Club won the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) South Region Championship over the Myrtle Beach Mutiny – its second title in a row. That win puts CFC in the final four teams in the league still competing for the national title. By winning the South Region, Chattanooga FC became the number two seed in the country and will host the third-seeded ... (click for more)