Answering Chemo Drug Scandal Questions

BlackburnNews.com file photo of the Windsor Regional Cancer Centre.

Medbuy is taking the blame for last year’s chemotherapy drug scandal.

Ontario’s Standing Committee on Social Policy released a report┬átoday, reviewing the incident which affected about 300 patients in Windsor-Essex and another 900 in other parts of Ontario and New Brunswick.

NDP Health and Long-Term Care Critic France Gelinas says the error is pointed out in the report, and makes it clear that there needs to be more oversight at group-purchasing drug sites like Medbuy. “They put out an RFP, a request for proposal, to buy the two chemo drugs, but they wrote it wrong. The chemo drugs had to be concentration-specific, and they did not write that into the proposal.”

Gelinas says a team of 25 pharmacists had a look at this proposal, and they all missed the error. The drug manufacturer in this case, Marchese, then made the chemo drugs based on information from Medbuy.

Bill 170 to improve pharmacy and patient safety is making its way through Ontario’s legislature right now. However, Gelinas fears an election could kill this bill.