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Marchese threatens lawsuit against Windsor Regional for defamation in chemo drug scandal

Windsor Regional Hospital is responding defiantly to a threat of legal action from the drug supplier at the heart of the diluted chemotherapy drug scandal.

A faxed letter addressed to Windsor Regional CEO David Musyj on Friday from lawyers acting for Marchese Hospital Solutions informs Musyj and the hospital that the company will file a lawsuit for defamation unless Windsor Regional retracts the defamatory articles, press releases and broadcasts it claims the hospital has made about Marchese over the past month.

(Marchese) thinks somehow I going to stop talking to (patients) publicly and privately, they fooling themselves, Musyj told The Star on Saturday. can sue away. the letter to Musyj, Toronto lawyer Randy Pepper said the hospital public statements about Marchese significantly injured my clients reputations and standing in the community and that the hospital can expect to be served with notice of legal action this week unless Windsor Regional drafts an press release to the record straight. broke a month ago that diluted doses of two chemotherapy drugs, cyclophosphamide and gemcitabine, mixed and supplied by Marchese, had been administered to more than 1,200 cancer patients at four Ontario hospitals and one in New Brunswick. About 290 patients at Windsor Regional had received the diluted doses over the past year.

The bags pandora uk of pre mixed intravenous solution contained too much saline solution, thereby diluting the doses of medication by between three and 20 per cent.

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The scandal set off a parliamentary inquiry, a class action lawsuit and separate investigations by the province, Health Canada and the Ontario College of Pharmacists.

Musyj said that at no point did he lay the blame for the drug error solely on Marchese. have never, ever said anything that was not truthful in any of this.

have always said each one of us in this process is culpable, he said.

While the other parties involved, including the hospital and college of pharmacists, have since offered up solutions to prevent repea pandora uk ting the same error again, it that Marchese has not publicly offered up any changes or suggestions of what it can do differently from now on, Musyj said.

In the lawyer letter to the hospital, Marchese indicates it will not sue if the hospital publishes a news release that will form the basis of its future public responses and if the hospital takes down any publications from its website which pandora uk are with that press release.

Musyj said not happening. spokesman Greg Wilkinson told The Star the company does not have any additional comments and declined to provide details about which particular articles, press releases and broadcasts Marchese takes issue with, saying only that they would be part of the discussions with the hospital. Wilkinson referred back to the lawyer letter to explain the company position and added the company hopes Musyj past statements about being fair and not pointing fingers would set the tone for everyone going forward.

The parliamentary inquiry which began at the end of April has heard testimony from Windsor Regional administration as well as officials from the other affected hospitals, Cancer Care Ontario and Medbuy, the hospital owned group purchasing organization responsible for awarding the contract to Marchese.
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Among the issues disputed at the hearings was whether the problem lay in how the drugs were produced or in how they were administered.

Marchese CEO Marita Zaffiro maintained the company prepared the solution as per its contract and assumed each bag would be used for a single patient. But Windsor Regional chief pharmacist, as well as others testifying before the parliamentary inquiry, said the assumption is incorrect and that Marchese pharmacists should have known that the doses of chemo treatment in each bag four grams is too much for a single patient, and so each bag would naturally be divided between patients.

Marchese did not have a licence to operate as either a Health Canada regulated drug establishment or a pharmacy overseen by the Ontario College of Pharmacists. Zaffiro told the parliamentary committee she reached out to both organizations when she was incorporating the company and both declined to provide oversight.

The Toronto Star has reported Health Canada disputed Zaffiro claim that it declined to regulate the company, citing a letter from the agency to Marchese dated May 9.

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