Vons said it would be unable to respond to specific questions from the BBC because of the coroner’s investigation into drug overdoses.

However, it confirmed the company would be conducting a study into the issue.

“Vons has always been committed to the safety and well-being of our patients and employees.

We continue to monitor the situation in Ireland and will be taking any and all steps necessary to ensure the safety of our employees and patients,” the company said.”

We take this very seriously and we are committed to ensuring that Vons patients, staff and families are protected and have the best possible care.”

Dr Helen Kelly, the coroner for Cork, said Vons has been the subject of many media reports and investigations.

“This is the latest of many concerning reports and inquiries by the media and public that have been made,” she said.

She said it was clear to her that Vonts had not been in compliance with the law, and that she had found the company’s corporate website to be “failing to meet its obligations”.

“Vonts has a history of poor management practices and poor working practices in relation to the implementation of drug testing and monitoring,” she added.

“I have no doubt that this has been a major issue in the management of Vons.”

Dr Kelly said that, in light of the new findings, she was also “not able to comment further”.

“I would urge you to seek independent advice before making any decisions, especially regarding the future of the company,” she concluded.

“The investigation is not over.

I hope that this matter is resolved soon.”

The BBC understands that the Coroner’s Office has already begun the process of making its findings public.

The Irish Times has asked Vons for comment.