Local Health Officials React to Meningitis Outbreak

Dothan, AL - Local health officials say they're being extremely cautious when it comes to the deadly meningitis outbreak.

"My priority is safe, quality patient care. We get updates from the FDA and the Alabama Department of Public Health and the Alabama Hospital Association immediately. We have the latest information so we'll be prepared to communicate any information that's needed to our patients," said Suzanne Woods, Flowers Hospital CEO.

Nineteen people have died from the outbreak.

It's been linked to steroid injections from the New England Compounding Center.

No Alabama hospitals got that particular medicine, but Flowers Hospital did buy other medications from the company.

Those medications have been removed from the shelves.

At this time, officials are identifying what products they have and any patients who might have received them.

"At this point it's really just a matter of precaution is our understanding to identify any other medications. If it's identified from the FDA that there are concerns with those medications that's when hospitals will be notified to promptly notify patients," said Woods.

Earlier Thursday, health officials confirmed the fungus behind the meningitis outbreak was also found in unopened vials of steroid medication.
An estimated 14,000 patients may have received this medication across the country.

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