On September 4, authorities detained Glenn Chin at the Logan International Airport in Boston, as he tried to board a flight to Hong Kong with his family. His arrest can be traced back to a 2012 meningitis outbreak caused by tainted drugs from the New England Compounding Center. Chin served as a supervising pharmacist of the now defunct company.
The outbreak, one of the deadliest in recent history, occurred when a batch of the company’s painkilling, injectable drugs was contaminated. Before its recall and the subsequent closure of the plant, the drug devastated families across the U.S. The corruption-created outbreak caused diverse problems, including:
- 750 cases of meningitis
- 64 deaths
- 20 states impacted by contamination-related illness
Of these meningitis cases, “217 infections and 15 deaths” allegedly had been a direct result of Chin’s signing off on a batch of drugs. After an inspection of the New England Compounding facilities, federal and state health investigators reported considerable faults with sterility and maintenance – both areas of Chin’s responsibility as supervisor.
Several pending lawsuits name Chin as a defendant in Boston federal court. The criminal investigation is still in progress, which is why law enforcement officials detained Chin as he attempted to leave the country. Although Chin was not the only individual allegedly responsible for the outbreak, authorities have placed a high priority on holding all former staffers and supervisors from the New England Compounding Center accountable for their actions.
In both traditional pharmacies and compounding facilities, pharmacists assume legal responsibility to keep the medicines they distribute untainted. The recent meningitis outbreak serves as a tragic example of the devastating consequences that can happen when medical professionals fail in their duties.
If you or a loved one became ill due to a pharmaceutical error, you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages, medical bills, pain and suffering and other damages. Contact a Washington D.C. medical malpractice attorney today to discuss your legal options.
Explore more info about these pharmacies (and their dangers) by checking out Pharmaceutical Compounds: What They Are and How They Cost Consumers (Part 1)