Monday, April 20, 2009

Tainted Drugs Kill 21 Horses in Florida

(Details Developing)

Various news sources, including the South Florida Sun Sentinel, are reporting that as many as 21 horses have died after receiving injections of a drug from an Argentine Veterinarian. It is believed that shots from the veterinarian, who is not licensed in the United States, may have been tainted with some sort of toxic agent.

The horses, or pedigreed polo ponies, belonged to a single Venezuelan team competing in the U.S. Open Polo Tournament at the Palm Beach Polo Club in Wellington, Florida. Each of the horses is estimated to be valued in excess of $100,000.

Fourteen of the horses collapsed on the polo grounds before the start of their scheduled match and seven others died at or while in route to an equine animal hospital several hours later. Efforts to treat the horses at the polo grounds and the hospital were unsuccessful.

The story and details are still developing but Florida officials are conducting necropsies and blood analysis on the animals to determine what specifically caused their death.

It still remains to be determined if the drugs that were injected were legal in the US, where they came from and the source of contamination of the drug.

This tragedy seems to be a harbinger of concern as it relates to medication and product safety for both animals and humans in the United States. The issue of counterfeit, adulterated and tainted medications worldwide continue to kill and injure hundreds of thousands of people and animals annually and now appears to be poised to significantly impact the population here in the United States. There is little distinction between human and animal medications as it relates to the production of pharmaceuticals, any issue that impacts one group of consumers will ultimate impact the other.

XStream believes that materials analysis of all medications within the supply chain (production, distribution and dispensing) is vital as it relates protecting all health care consumers from counterfeit, adulterated and contaminated medications.

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