The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says it is aware of two second-home pharmacies that sold contaminated medical products to a second-generation American who visited the Philippines last month.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has not yet confirmed that the U.K.-based chain, Doctors Choice Pharmacy in Louisville, Kentucky, and The Pharmacy on Westmoreland Street in Birmingham, Alabama, are connected to the Uyghur man, who was not identified by name, or to the three other people infected in the Philippines.
The FDA has launched an investigation into the two chains and the three Americans who bought medical products from them.
The agency says the Uygur man’s travel to the Philippines on Nov. 27 was documented by an employee of Doctors Choice and that the other two people who purchased medical products were identified by their names and dates of birth.
“We are aware of the situation and are conducting an immediate investigation to determine if there is any risk to the public,” a CDC spokeswoman said in an email.
The Philippines is experiencing its own outbreak of coronaviruses, and the Urawa, Burundi, and other nations have also seen high numbers of cases.
In the Philippines, where the number of cases is approaching a 20-year high, health officials have announced a plan to limit travelers to limited areas and increase vaccination campaigns.
The Philippines also recently opened a “vaccine counter” to help prevent the spread of the virus.
Doctors Choice is also the only medical specialty chain that is licensed to sell medical products in the U, U.A., and Pampanga states, though it is not required to do so.
The company declined to comment on how the Philippine doctor who bought the products knew that they were contaminated.
Doctors Choice says it has since halted all sales of its products and that it has been cooperating with the CDC’s investigation.
“We are cooperating fully with all investigations,” said CEO David Pappas.
The two stores were not named by the FDA.
The Uyge brothers were identified as the man who visited Doctors Choice in Louisville on Nov 27, and they were identified on the front page of the local news media, ABC News reported.ABC News did not identify the Philippines doctor who purchased the drugs from Doctors Choice.
The pharmacy was not licensed to provide medical care in the United States, according to the CDC.
The company did not respond to a request for comment.
The FDA’s investigation into Doctors Choice has not been completed.
The Uyges are believed to have been traveling to the United Kingdom on Nov 26, according the Philippines health ministry.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.