Manufacturer of device in 'superbug' outbreak faces probe

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The company that manufactured the medical devices tied to a deadly "superbug" outbreak is being investigated for possible violations of false claims and anti-kickback laws.

The Olympus Corp. of the Americas, an arm of Japan's Olympus Corp., disclosed Feb. 6 that it has been under federal investigation since 2011 for possible violations of laws that typically ban improper payments to doctors or other customers.

A company statement says Olympus is talking with the Justice Department to resolve the case, and it warns the company's financial results could be "adversely affected."

At least seven people have been infected with an antibiotic-resistant strain of bacteria after undergoing endoscopic procedures at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. Two of them died.

Olympus' Medical Systems Group supplied UCLA's equipment.