Contaminated IV Deaths
Six different Alabama hospitals are connected to reports of patients exposed to dangerous bacteria found in their intravenous (IV) fluid bags. Health officials are currently investigating the cause of the outbreak and the resulting deaths.
Who Has Been Affected?
Nine people died after receiving IV fluid bags infected with Serratia marcescens bacteria and 10 others were sickened.
Serratia marcescens is usually found growing around toilets, bathroom tile grout, and in showers. These conditions often require a bleach disinfectant to kill the bacteria.
When introduced into the bloodstream, the bacteria can cause infections in the urinary tract, respiratory tract, or eyes and result in death.
What Hospitals Were Involved?
According to Alabama health officials, patients at the following six hospitals were administered contaminated IV bags:
- Cooper Green Mercy Hospital
- Medical West Hospital
- Prattville Baptist Hospital
- Princeton Baptist Medical Center
- Select Specialty Hospital
- Shelby Baptist Medical Center
How Could This Have Happened?
A joint investigation by the Alabama Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is currently underway to determine how Serratia marcescens could have been present in what is supposed to be a sterile IV solution.
Has There Been an IV Bag Recall?
Meds IV Pharmacy, the pharmacy that supplied the IV bags to the six Birmingham-area hospitals, has pulled affected products off the market.
What Should I Do?
If a loved one died after being exposed to bacteria in his or her IV bag, we want to do everything in our power for you and your family. Contact us today to learn about your legal rights and how we may be able to help.
TV News Coverage
Cory Watson Files Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Contaminated IV Case
Bacteria-tainted IV Bags Connected to Nine Hospital Patient Deaths, Ten Injuries
(Birmingham, AL) Lawyers at Birmingham, Alabama, law firm Cory Watson Crowder & DeGaris have filed suit on behalf of a woman who died after receiving contaminated IV nutrition at a Birmingham hospital. The wrongful death lawsuit charges Meds IV Pharmacy, LLC, company officials and others caused the death of Lunna Powell who died at Princeton Baptist Medical Center March 5 after being administered IV nutrition contaminated with Serratia marcescens bacteria. Ms. Powell's death is one of nine reported hospital patient deaths and 10 patient injuries tied to contaminated IV solution. State health officials have said that Meds IV Pharmacy supplied all of the intravenous (IV) fluid bags in the cases that occurred at six Alabama hospitals.
"The death of Lunna Powell was a needless tragedy caused by the reckless actions of people at Meds IV Pharmacy," said attorney Leila Watson of Cory Watson Crowder & DeGaris. "By supplying the hospital with IV fluids tainted with deadly bacteria, Meds IV endangered the lives of patients, and in the case of Ms. Powell, they caused her death and they must be held accountable," said Watson. The suit was filed April 1, 2011, in the Circuit Court of Jefferson County, Alabama.
According to Alabama public health officials, patients at Cooper Green Mercy Hospital, Medical West, Prattville Baptist Hospital, Princeton Baptist Medical Center, Select Specialty Hospital and Shelby Baptist Medical Center were given IV fluids tainted with bacteria. The Alabama Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are carrying out a joint investigation to determine exactly how the bacteria contamination occurred. Public health officials say they believe all of the bacteria-contaminated IV bags have been pulled from the supply chain.
Cory Watson Crowder & DeGaris is a Birmingham, Alabama, law firm recognized nationally for its complex litigation including multi-district litigation, class actions, products liability, business and securities litigation, environmental litigation and mass torts litigation of defective medical devices and pharmaceutical drugs. Cory Watson has an extensive practice in consumer litigation, personal injury law and wrongful death cases.
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