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Meningitis-Linked Co. Didn’t Have Prescriptions, Reuters Says

Oct. 13 (Bloomberg) -- New England Compounding Center, a pharmacy linked to a fatal, 12-state meningitis outbreak, sold medication without gaining individual proof of prescriptions, Reuters reported, citing e-mails it obtained.

More than a dozen e-mails also showed the Framingham, Massachusetts-based company sought to win bulk orders from physicians, the news service said. Both actions seem to support regulators’ statements that rules were violated, Reuters said.

The e-mails also show that NECC referred business between it and a neurosurgery clinic in Mississippi to a sister company, Ameridose LLC, Reuters said. Ameridose earlier this week said the two companies operated separately, Reuters said.

There have been 185 confirmed cases of meningitis caused by fungal contamination traced to vials from NECC that mixed a steroid shot and sold it to 75 hospitals and clinics in 23 states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said today. Fourteen people have died from the infection, the CDC said. The drug, used to treat neck and back pain, was contaminated during the mixing process.

New England Compounding Center didn’t immediately respond to a voicemail message left by Bloomberg News seeking comment, and calls to Ameridose went unanswered. A representative for both companies declined to comment to Reuters.

To contact the reporter on this story: Dan Hart in Washington at dahart@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Sylvia Wier at swier@bloomberg.net

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