Federal Regulators Halt Manufacturing at Two Wisconsin Drug Companies Blamed for Serious Injuries and Deaths

Federal officials are taking legal action against a drug manufacturer and distributor that exposed consumers to potentially life-threatening bacteria. Triad Group Inc. and H &P Industries of Hartland, Wisconsin, are accused of violating federal safety standards by distributing contaminated medical products. The companies are owned and operated by the same entity and have a history of regulatory violations. Inspection records documented moldy cosmetic wipes and medical cleaning swabs linked to deadly skin infections.

Our personal injury attorneys are concerned that these firms voluntarily recalled millions of tainted products over the last several months, yet they continue to produce and ship medical supplies and drugs that pose a serious risk to consumers. In order to prevent further harm, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently filed a legal injunction, temporarily halting all manufacturing operations.

The risk of harm is great, since the Triad Group and H& P Industries sell antiseptic pads and other drug products to some of the nation’s top pharmacies, including Walgreens and CVS. These products are also widely used in hospitals and clinics, despite evidence of contamination.

According to the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel, consumer lawsuits filed in several states blame Triad products for serious personal injuries and death. In Texas, doctors allegedly used a contaminated alcohol wipe on 2-year-old Harry Kothari while removing a benign cyst from his brain. This is a simple medical procedure however the toddler contracted a skin infection that is normally not associated with a hospital stay. This infection led to bacterial meningitis, and ultimately caused the tragic death of this young boy. Lab cultures confirmed the contamination on the wipes, and further revealed that two-thirds of all Triad Group alcohol wipes were tainted with strains of Bacillus cereus. Four other lawsuits brought by multiple sclerosis patients who used the wipes before necessary drug injections and developed disfiguring skin infections are also pending.

The FDA should have taken stronger steps to protect the public from these dangerous products as a series of inspections from 2009 to 2011 revealed serious compliance problems. Still, inspectors allowed the drug firms to operate and voluntarily make safety improvements. Massive recalls started in January of 2011, which included millions of potentially contaminated alcohol prep products and unsterile medical lubricating jellies. But many contaminated products remained in hospitals and store shelves, putting consumers at risk of serious harm. Just a few months after the voluntary recalls began federal marshals seized more than $6 million worth of potentially tainted medical products.

Our drug recall attorneys are encouraged by the latest court order that will stop the drug firms from manufacturing any products until they can show that they meet federal safety standards. The order also requires the hiring of an independent consultant to conduct inspections and develop a new manufacturing plan.

Unfortunately, too many innocent consumers have already suffered unnecessary and permanent injuries and even death. Federal safety standards exist in order to ensure the safety and quality of manufactured drugs. Patients rely on drugs and medical supplies for a variety of medical treatments and negligent companies that put them in harm’s way should be held accountable. At least a half dozen lawsuits in six states allege that contaminated Triad products led to serious or deadly skin infections. Even after millions of contaminated products were recalled, federal investigators failed to take legal action for several months. Our personal injury attorneys remain committed to helping all victims whose lives were harmed by contaminated Triad products or other dangerous drugs and medical supplies.

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