Use of Compounded Drugs a ‘Business Decision’

The CDC reports 53 cases of fungal meningitis in Tennessee, 205 nationwide.

State health officials say 53 people have now been diagnosed with a rare form of fungal meningitis.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there are more than 200 cases nationwide.

Fifteen people have now died after receiving tainted steroid injections from a compounding pharmacy in Massachusetts. The injections used by three Tennessee pain clinics were reportedly cheaper than an FDA-approved alternative.

Health Commissioner John Dreyzehner was asked about it on Friday.

“That’s a business decision made by the facilities and not something we can really address here at the Tennessee Department of Health.”

So far, a majority of the 53 cases in Tennessee are tied to an outpatient clinic at St. Thomas Hospital. A clinic spokesman did not respond to a request for comment over the weekend.

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