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Apr
12

Drug compounding’s continuing problems

According to the NYTimes, the FDA’s ongoing investigation into compounding pharmacies:

“found numerous unsafe practices at about 30 compounding pharmacies, the same type of facility responsible for the tainted drug that caused a deadly meningitis outbreak last year.

Among the problems found were unidentified black particles floating in vials of supposedly sterile medicines, rust and mold in clean rooms where such drugs are made, improper air flow, and clothing that left workers’ skin exposed.” [emphasis added]

If they aren’t, workers’ comp payers and medical management firms should be paying very close attention to these inspections.  There are three problems with compounds – they tend to be very costly, there is zero evidence that they help the healing process, and there is a wealth of evidence (see above) that compounds can be very dangerous – if not lethal.

Workers’ comp claimants harmed by compounds will incur expenses to address that harm – expense that will have to be covered by the workers’ comp payer.

The payer may also have to provide death benefits for claimants killed by compounds.

States that currently have a compounding problem are likely to see it grow – as it has in California.  States enjoying a compound-free experience are almost certain to be targeted by compounders and their enablers.

The list of FDA-inspected compounders is here.


One thought on “Drug compounding’s continuing problems”

  1. Very interesting Joe.

    Unfortunately I think this is a bit like takeaway restaurants. In that some are scrupulously clean, but others have very low standards.

    It tends to come back to the personal standards of the people running these places, and I doubt these are isolated incidents.

    It makes you wonder if they will step up their efforts to check out more of them, and more regularly?

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Joe Paduda is the principal of Health Strategy Associates

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