December 24th, 2013
02:32 AM ET

Pharmacy agrees to $100M settlement

A compounding pharmacy at the center of a fungal meningitis outbreak last year has agreed to a preliminary settlement that would create a $100 million fund for victims.

The fund will also be used to pay off creditors of the bankrupt New England Compounding Center, attorneys in the case said. A judge will have to approve the plan before it goes into effect.

The nationwide meningitis outbreak was linked to steroid injections distributed by the Massachusetts-based pharmacy.

More than 700 illnesses and 64 deaths in 20 states were blamed on the injections, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. But the CDC noted the deaths are from "all causes among persons who meet the case definition and may not be directly attributed to a fungal infection."

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Filed under: Health • U.S.
Astronauts to make Christmas Eve spacewalk
December 24th, 2013
12:49 AM ET

Astronauts to make Christmas Eve spacewalk

While many people may spend Christmas Eve doing last-minute gift shopping, two American astronauts have a more challenging matter to attend to Tuesday.
In orbit more than 200 miles above the planet, Flight Engineers Rick Mastracchio and Mike Hopkins are set to embark on a spacewalk to repair part of the International Space Station's cooling system.
It will be the second Christmas Eve spacewalk in history, according to NASA.
The two engineers will be carrying out the second in a series of expeditions needed to replace a malfunctioning pump, which circulates ammonia through loops outside the station to keep equipment cool.

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Filed under: U.S.