Gov. Patrick Signs Compounding Pharmacy Bill

Gov. Deval Patrick has signed a law overhauling state oversight of compounding pharmacies in Massachusetts.

The measure had been in the works for nearly two years since a nationwide meningitis outbreak linked to the now-closed New England Compounding Center in Framingham. A tainted steroid produced by the company was blamed for 64 deaths and hundreds of illnesses.

Patrick said in signing the bill on Thursday that it will help clear up "grey areas" in state regulation of compounding pharmacies that typically mix customized medications.

"That lack of clarity allowed for some very bad behavior, and very hurtful behavior, which this Legislature have stepped up to fix," he said.

Officials say the bill includes new requirements for licensing, labeling and education. It also increases fines against pharmacies to up to $25,000 per violation, with an additional $1,000 for each day a violation continues after it was supposed to be corrected.

With additional reporting by the WBUR Newsroom

This article was originally published on July 10, 2014.


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