Syracuse/Watertown (WSYR/WWTI-TV) – A drug connected a fungal meningitis outbreak that has claimed at least seven lives was not available at Central New York health-care facilities, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
More than 90 cases of the condition have been confirmed in nine states: Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, and Virginia.
The steroid, which is used to ease back pain, originated at a Massachusetts pharmacy and has been recalled.
The closest location to Central New York that distributed the drug was Rochester Brain and Spine.
13WHAM-TV in Rochester is reporting that 12 people in that area are being tested for the condition.
The CDC has posted a list of facilities that received the drug on its website
Samaritan Medical Center in Watertown, released a statement earlier today in regards to the recall. Physicians and staff are reassuring patients that SMC's supply of the drug, methylprednisolone acetate, is safe and not provided by the company at the focus of the recall.
"Patient safety is our number one priority here at Samaritan," Bhupinder Bolla, MD, one of SMC's fellowship-trained pain management physicians. "Our team here at the Pain Center and throughout the hospital takes any and all steps necessary to prevent infection or exposure to contaminated materials. Our patients can rest assured that our supply of methylprednisolone acetate is safe and continues to be an extremely successful intervention to relive chronic pain and return patients to their active lives."