Tuesday, October 27, 2015
Official Seeks to Disallow NECC Claims Worth $2 Billion +
By Walter F. Roche Jr.
A key official in the bankruptcy of the company blamed for a fatal 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak is asking a judge to disallow dozens of claims totaling well over $2 billion.
In a motion filed this week in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Massachusetts, Paul D. Moore, the former trustee in the bankruptcy of the New England Compounding Center, said that some of those claims were duplicates, while others were superseded or amended by subsequent claims.
Still others were filed after a court deadline and some lacked the necessary documentation. Some have already been satisfied. Overall his motion calls for some 80 claims to be formally denied.
Moore, whose current title is post confirmation officer, wrote that if the claims were not denied, some of the claimants would get double payments.
The outbreak was caused by fungus tainted steroids shipped by NECC to health clinics, physicians and hospitals around the country. Seventy-six patients died, most from fungal meningitis. More than 750 were sickened
Many of the claims which Moore's motion would deny were made by health care providers, seeking to recoup expected claims from their patients sickened by the preservative free methylprednisolone acetate.
The largest single claim listed in the motion was for $1.17 billion submitted by the Saint Thomas Outpatient Neurosurgical Center in Nashville, Tenn. That claim was listed in the category of satisfied or released claims.
On the same list was the Specialty Surgery Center of Crossville, Tenn. which had submitted a claim of $240 million.
Only one, a claim filed by the Toledo Clinic, was listed in the duplicate claim category.
The Tennessee Health Department and the Tennesssee Pharmacy Board submitted claims of $10 million apiece to cover the cost of the investigation of the outbreak. By agreement the claims were reduced to $5 million, but state officials concede it is unlikely the money will ever be recovered.
Some $200 million has been amassed in the bankruptcy and the vast majority of that money is expected to be paid to victims of the outbreak or to the survivors of those who died.