MEXICO CITY ( Associated Press) — The public prosecutor’s office in Durango, a state in northwestern Mexico, on Monday blamed private hospitals in the state for contamination of anesthetics that caused an outbreak of meningitis. In which 22 people died and at least 71 became ill.
In a statement, the prosecutor’s office said it had issued seven arrest warrants against administrators and owners of four private hospitals where the outbreak began in November.
Almost all of those infected were women undergoing obstetric procedures. All patients underwent an anesthesia procedure administered through needles in the spinal cord. The federal government later confirmed that the injections were contaminated with fungus.,
Some feared the drug had been contaminated in the manufacturing or distribution process, but officials said the problem arose in hospitals.
According to prosecutors, “laboratory results” determined that procedures implemented at those centers were the cause of the illness, though they did not specify what had been done wrong.
Previously, four clinics had been closed, claiming that “serious deficiencies” had been detected during inspections.
It has been the latest scandal for the Mexican health system, which has also repeatedly had difficulties supplying drugs for children with cancer.
In 2020, 14 people died after a hospital run by Mexico’s state oil company gave dialysis patients medicine contaminated with the bacteria. More than 69 patients fell ill in that outbreak.