BEMIDJI – Sanford Bemidji does not purchase pharmaceuticals from the company involved in a national meningitis breakout.
The New England Compounding Center in Massachusetts produced an injectable steroid for the treatment of back pain. Vials of the steroid have been linked to 35 cases of a rare type of fungal meningitis in six states. Five people have died, the Associated Press reported.
Sanford Bemidji Medical Center and Clinic do not purchase pharmaceuticals from the New England Compounding Center, according to an email from the hospital. Sanford Bemidji confirmed Friday that no recalls were issued for the steroid injections that are distributed within Sanford Bemidji’s pharmacy.
The AP on Friday reported that four patients of Minnesota pain clinics that used the steroid showed symptoms of fungal meningitis and were told to be tested.
Marsha Thiel, chief executive officer of Medical Advanced Pain Specialists, said the clinics are working with health authorities to track down about 700 patients who were given injections of the steroid for back or neck pain, the AP reported.
The meningitis in question is not transmissible from person to person. The Minnesota Health Department said symptoms of infection typically show up within one to four weeks of an injection, but could start sooner or develop later.
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