Time Running Out On Tainted Steroids Compensation Fund
June 26, 2019
The clock is ticking for victims of the 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak to file a claim from a $40 million victims' compensation fund.
At least 76 people died and hundreds more became ill nationwide because of tainted steroids. 11 of the 23 Michigan deaths involved Livingston County residents, after investigators connected the New England Compounding Center to various clinics, including Michigan Pain Specialists in Genoa Township, which had dispensed the NECC contaminated steroids. The compensation fund is being administered by the Massachusetts' Attorney General's office and officials say whatever money that is not designated by Sept. 30 will be returned to the U.S. Justice Department, which originally allocated the money.
So far, claims filed by 621 victims with a total value of $22 million have been approved. While the formal application window closed on December 31, 2018, the Massachusetts' Attorney General's office will review and make payments to any remaining eligible claimants in the coming months, for as long as they are able to do so. However, any potential new claimants will have to call the agency directly to determine if they are still able to file an application. Victims who have not filed should contact the Mass. Attorney General's office at 1-844-315-0339. The office can also be reached by email at NECCAssistance@mass.gov.
Meanwhile, two men are due back in Livingston County court later this year on second-degree murder charges related to the outbreak. Barry Cadden, the co-founder of New England Compounding Center and Glenn Chin, who worked there as a pharmacist, are currently serving federal prison sentences for convictions in a separate case related to the 2012 national outbreak. At least 76 people died and hundreds more became ill nationwide because of tainted steroids.
The Michigan Attorney General's office in January charged Cadden and Chin in connection with the 11 Livingston County deaths. Michigan officials waited to file charges until after Cadden and Chin were prosecuted in Boston federal court. Cadden is currently serving a nine year prison sentence, while Chin was sentenced to eight years in prison in the same Massachusetts court. (JK)