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Meningitis Outbreak Victim Files Suit Against Nashville Outpatient Center

by mdp | May 14th, 2013

An 86-year-old Nashville woman has filed a lawsuit against Saint Thomas Outpatient Neurosurgical Center and the Howell Allen Clinic over an illness she claims was caused by two injections of a tainted spinal steroid she received at the outpatient center. In a complaint filed earlier this month in Davidson County Circuit Court, Virginia Neely said she was referred to the outpatient center by Dr. Everette Howell of Howell Allen – 50% owner of the neurosurgical center where Neely received the contaminated steroid injections. Also named as defendants in Neely’s suit are Saint Thomas Hospital, Saint Thomas Health and Saint Thomas Network, the latter of which is also half-owner of the outpatient center. If you have been affected by the fungal meningitis outbreak in TN, and you believe a tainted steroid injection to be the cause, contact our attorneys at Michael D. Ponce & Associates today.

Fungal Meningitis Outbreak Linked to Tainted Steroid Injections

The national fungal meningitis outbreak has sickened a total of 741 people, including 152 in Tennessee alone, and a shocking 15 patients treated for the fungal meningitis infection in Tennessee have died. According to Neely’s complaint, she was injected with steroids on June 22 and July 12 of last year, and later reported experiencing severe back pain at the injection site. The elderly woman was subsequently diagnosed with fungal meningitis and an abscess at the site of the steroid injections. “She has remained on the antifungal medications for the months of December, January, February and March of 2013,” the complaint states, adding that “she continues to live under a threat that she may suffer reoccurrence of the spinal abscess.” As a result of her steroid injection-related illness, Neely is seeking $3 million in compensatory damages from the defendants.

Contact Our Qualified Attorneys to File a Claim

Neely’s meningitis outbreak suit accuses the defendants of negligence, claiming that they failed to property investigate NECC before purchasing medications from the compounding pharmacy. The suit also alleges that the clinic violated the state product liability statute. “Virginia Neely played no role in selecting the supplier of the steroids,” the complaint states, adding that the outpatient clinic purchased from NECC “because it was less expensive than safe, commercially available alternatives.” Neely’s suit is expected to be overseen by Judge Joe P. Binkley Jr., who is also charged with handling three previous lawsuits filed against the Nashville outpatient center on behalf of Tennessee fungal meningitis victims. If you received a steroid injection at a healthcare facility in Tennessee, and you have since been diagnosed with fungal meningitis or another serious side effect, consult our experienced lawyers at Michael D. Ponce & Associates to discuss your legal options.


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