In many injury cases, past conduct of the parties factor into the legal issues at play. That is because these cases are rooted in negligence–did the defendant act unreasonably? The determination of what is or is not reasonable is based, in part, of past conduct and experience. It is reasonable to take actions to correct risks that your know exist. You know they exist if there have been problems in the past.
However, it is important to note that product liability rules are somewhat different than traditional negligence cases. While past conduct may impact a determination of reasonableness, in some cases reasonableness is not even a factor. That includes some product liability cases where “strict liability” is applied. This refers to legal rules which requires companies to pay for the harm caused by their products regardless of whether specific act of negligence can be identified.
These issues are important to consider in the ongoing spinal steroid recall case. It is instructive to understand exactly what this company knew or should have known about the safety of its products and protocols.
As summarized in a helpful new CBS article, many new allegations were made this week about the pharmacy attached to this fungal meningitis scare. In particular, the story argues that the company may have done work outside of the scope of its state license and might even have misled state regulators.
The Governor of the state where the compounding company is located explained to reporters this week that the business had a license only to fill prescriptions for certain patients. However, they might have done more than that. He summarized that, “What they were doing instead is making big batches and selling them out of state as a manufacturer would, and that is certainly outside of their state license.
In the aftermath of the Governor’s remarks, a Congressman sent a letter to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to determine if the company misled the federal agency as well and violated federal safety rules. The representative went on to ask if sanctions against the company were possible. There is no word yet on the FDA response.
For their part, the involved company has not made many statements since the problems started. The products were recalled and the business’s entire operation has been shut down while the mess is sorted out. In addition, a second pharmacy has also agreed to temporarily shut down. State and federal regulators are going to investigate that facility as well to determine if there is any risk of similar contamination problems which might place patients at risk. Considering the seriousness of this outbreak–twelve have already died–there is no room for error or lax responses.
Legal Help in Illinois for Fungal Meningitis
Many more complex legal details stemming from this case will no doubt unfold in the coming days, weeks, and months. Right now it is important for all local residents affected to understand that they have legal rights. If you were involved in this incident, please take a moment to call our office, share your story, and see how we can help. There is no obligation and nothing to lose from learning about your options.
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