Judge lifts evidence restrictions in Alabama HAI case

More information may be forthcoming now that a judge has rescinded his previous order banning medical nutrition company Meds IV from moving or destroying any evidence or documents concerning the case. The judge clarified that the company may move and/or release information to federal and state investigators immediately.

Late last week, state investigators revealed the suspected source of the infection of Serratia marcescens bacteria that may have been transmitted to patients through a Meds IV total parenteral nutrition product. The likely culprit: Improper sterilization of a faucet, container and stirring tool used in the compounding of the TPN solution, says Mary McIntyre, a physician with the Alabama Department of Public Health.

Officials indicate they're also investigating why the company's filtering system didn't catch the bacteria before it contaminated the nutrition liquid.

State officials have stopped short of saying directly that the IV nutrition solution is what killed the nine patients, saying only that the bacteria found in the patients' bodies has "the same genetic footprint," as that found on the items at the Meds IV facility.

For more:
- read the Becker's ASC Review article
- check out the Associated Press article
- here's the Alabama Department of Public Health statement (.pdf)