Companies Sentenced for Supplying Hospitals with Defective Pre-filled Syringes

A major healthcare company and a sister company have been sentenced for supplying hospitals with defective pre-filled syringes.

Injection into an arm

A major healthcare company and a sister company that sold a range of ready-to-use pharmaceutical products it manufactured have been sentenced for supplying hospitals with defective pre-filled syringes that contributed to the death of a diabetic patient.

Neil Judge, from Barnsley, died at the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield in November 2010 after being treated with a batch of intravenous insulin syringes that actually contained no insulin.

He suffered multi-organ failure triggered by a serious episode of diabetic ketoacidosis because his body was deprived of insulin for more than 13 hours.

The faulty syringes were supplied to Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust by Fresenius Kabi Ltd as a licenced wholesaler for Calea UK Ltd, which manufactured the product.

Both companies, based at the same address in Runcorn, Cheshire, were fined at Sheffield Crown Court today (9 July) after being prosecuted by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

Fresenius Kabi was convicted for its role in a ‘medicinal failure’ that a coroner had earlier ruled was a ‘major contributory factor’ in Mr Judge’s death.

The court heard that supplying faulty syringes wasn’t an isolated incident and that Calea also manufactured a batch of pre-prepared Tobramycin syringes