Dr. Marion Kainer Of State Department Of Health To Testify At Nov. 15 Senate Hearing On Meningitis Outbreak

Friday, November 9, 2012

Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tn.) on Friday announced that Dr. Marion Kainer, director of the Healthcare Associated Infections and Antimicrobial Resistance Program for the Tennessee Department of Health, will testify at a Senate committee hearing next week on the nationwide meningitis outbreak that has led to 13 deaths in Tennessee.

“Dr. Kainer’s quick response to the earliest meningitis case in Tennessee helped quickly narrow the source of the fungal infections and limit the number of victims who received the contaminated steroid injections nationwide. Her testimony will be critical to our understanding of the outbreak, and to what improvements could be made to help state health departments responding to public health crises,” Senator Alexander said.

Dr. Kainer was invited to testify at the Nov. 15 hearing by the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, at Senator Alexander’s request. Senator Alexander is likely to be ranking Republican on the committee in the new Congress.

Thursday’s hearing, entitled “Pharmacy Compounding: Implications of the 2012 Meningitis Outbreak,” will examine the meningitis outbreak, with a particular focus upon state and federal oversight of the New England Compounding Center (NECC), the source of the contaminated steroid injections that have caused a meningitis outbreak nationwide.

Dr. Kainer has been widely praised for how she responded to the outbreak’s first meningitis cases in Tennessee. Dr. Kainer, working with other employees at the Tennessee Department of Health, notified federal authorities within three days of the first case and were able to trace the source of the outbreak to medicine being dispensed at pain clinics.

Dr. Paul Jarris, executive director of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, told the Tennessean: “By the time we learned this was a problem around the country, the information from Tennessee had already narrowed it down to what the problem was.”

Dr. Jarris said that the Tennessee Department of Health’s response was “a textbook case of how to do it right.”


Heroin, Buprenorphine Drug Busts On The Rise In Tennessee

Tennessee’s nearly half-decade long effort, dedicated to limiting easy access to prescription pain medications and similar opioid-based narcotics, has been successful, officials said. Since 2012 the state has seen a steady decline in the use and abuse of these substances commonly prescribed by family physicians. 2015 drug seizure data from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation shows ... (click for more)

The Lantern At Morning Pointe Presents Alzheimer’s Seminar "Dementia Talk: How To Talk To A Loved One"

Join The Lantern at Morning Pointe Alzheimer's Center of Excellence in Chattanooga as they present Dementia Talk: How to Talk to a Loved One featuring Carla Guthrie, Morning Pointe Lantern Program Specialist and Best Friends master trainer.   Ms. Guthrie will cover the following topics in her informative seminar:   - How do I engage a friend or loved one who has ... (click for more)

County School Board Considers "Best Practices Audit" On Compliance With Board Policies

The County School Board is considering carrying out a "Best Practices Audit" to determine if board policies are filtering down to the school level. Board member Greg Martin said members of the Superintendent's Student Leadership Council told him that only a fraction of students are familiar with board policies on bullying and other topics. Steve Highlander, another board member, ... (click for more)

Several Central City Schools Overcrowded, School Board Is Told

All the county school overcrowding is not out in the fast-growing East Brainerd and Ooltewah sections, school board members were told Thursday. Several central city schools are far above capacity. East Lake Elementary - with 655 students and a capacity of 493 students - is at 133 percent occupancy. Calvin Donaldson, Orchard Knob Elementary and East Side Elementary also are ... (click for more)

Innocent Until Proven Guilty, Even Athletes

From reading Randy Smith's column on the lawsuit against UT it is pretty evident that he never took a legal course in his life. I was under the impression that in this country one was innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. It appears this no longer applies to athletes(particularly black athletes) in the U.S. in 2016. I have always said that if I am picked for jury duty ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Warmth For Cold Days

I come across all sorts of warm things every day and as we burrow out of sub-freezing temperatures for a day or two, shaking off ice and snow, allow me to share a few things for a change that may take the bite out of the winter wind. This is what helps me. * * * Judy Bellenfant, who has been a soul mate ever since we shared jokes in high school classrooms, sends along this ... (click for more)