The National Consumers League (NCL) today commends the House Energy and Commerce Committee for holding a hearing on the outbreak of fungal meningitis caused by contaminated injectable steroids made and distributed by the New England Compounding Center (NECC). NECC has a long history of dodging effective regulation and engaging in shoddy drug compounding practices. Those practices ultimately led to the deaths this year of 32 patients and 438 sickened by the injectable pain medications.
NCL supports legislation, HR 6854, the Verifying Authority and Legality in Drug (VALID) Compounding Act. The bill will close loopholes that allowed the contaminated drug to get into the marketplace and be administered to 14,000 innocent patients. The bill’s sponsor, Congressman Ed Markey (D-MA), is a longstanding and distinguished member of the Energy and Commerce Committee.