Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

Merck/Vioxx verdict - Guilty

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
This topic is archived.
Home » Discuss » Latest Breaking News Donate to DU
 
abbeyco Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 01:56 PM
Original message
Merck/Vioxx verdict - Guilty
Just seeing it now....that's a biggie!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Megahurtz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:01 PM
Response to Original message
1. Do you have a link? n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
abbeyco Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:03 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. Not yet...
I can't find one from any site, I'm just seeing the headlines with 'details to follow'. Sorry...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lochloosa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:09 PM
Response to Reply #1
7. Here you go
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Megahurtz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:27 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. Holy Crap that's a lot of money....
.....but then again what price is a life? :shrug:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Brundle_Fly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:02 PM
Response to Original message
2. I am glad.
should have been in the billions though.

this seems like pocket change.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:02 PM
Response to Original message
3. It'll be reduced or overturned on appeal.
The corporations OWN the appeals courts, now.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
cal04 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:03 PM
Response to Original message
5. Jury Awards $253M to Widow in Vioxx Death
Texas jury found pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. liable for the death of a man who took the once-popular painkiller Vioxx.

Jurors awarded Robert Ernst's widow, Carol, $253.4 million in damages, which is a combination of his lost pay as a Wal-Mart produce manager, mental anguish, loss of companionship and punitive damages. In Texas, punitive damages are capped at twice the amount of economic damages lost pay and up to $750,000 on top of non-economic damages, which are comprised of mental anguish and loss of companionship.

The case drew national attention from pharmaceutical companies, lawyers, consumers, stock analysts and arbitragers as a signal of what lies ahead for Merck, which has vowed to fight the more than 4,200 state and federal Vioxx-related lawsuits pending across the country. Merck said it plans to appeal.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20050819/ap_on_he_me/vioxx_t...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Scooter24 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:08 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. My prayers are with this poor woman...
Loss of a loved one, especially her husband, is truly tragic.

But I'm sorry, $254 Million is way too much.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Rex_Goodheart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:13 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. I don't agree with this verdict...
I wasn't in the courtroom, but from what I've seen on TV she certainly could not prove that her husband would not have died, anyway.

Sorry, but this one is complete BS from what I see, and is the type of verdict that makes prescriptions and health care more expensive for the rest of us.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
PunkPop Donating Member (847 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:24 PM
Response to Reply #9
10. Nice Repug talking point
Lawsuit abuse! Lawsuit abuse!

What makes our prescriptions and health care more expensive is the most inefficient private health care system in the world administered by corrupt pharmacuetical and insurance companies.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lochloosa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:50 PM
Response to Reply #9
14. That's the beauty of JURY TRIALS
it's not the judge that comes up with these verdicts. I wonder if you would have felt the same way sitting on the jury listening to the way evidence of the pharms hiding data that showed the drug to be unsafe.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
hamsterjill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:56 PM
Response to Reply #14
35. Good Point about Jury Trials
We were discussing the Merck verdict in the office and, as one would expect, the line divided right between Repukes and Dems. Amazing, isn't it? The only thing that the Republican people seemed to see from the case was money, money, money. The Dems saw a man who died.

Obviously, those people who were sitting on the actual jury were convinced that Merck DID something to deserve a pretty hefty punishment. I think their verdict was meant to send a message out loud and clear!

The fact that there are some 4000 +/- more suits filed against Merck did not seem to make any difference to the Republicans. They all sided with the corporate agenda.

Discussions like this one truly scare me when I think just how very divided this country really is.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Eloriel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 03:55 PM
Response to Reply #9
23. I rather think it's the type of verdict that makes drug companies
do the RIGHT thing instead of the expedient, profit-oriented thing. There's no way this drug should've been on the market, IMO. With enough of this type of award, comapnies will think twice about risking the health and LIFE of individuals with their risky products.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
pitohui Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 04:01 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. that's crazy, vioxx is a good drug
Edited on Fri Aug-19-05 04:02 PM by pitohui
hope you are never in a situation where the only choice is an opiate, which the doc won't prescribe because it is scheduled, so you're left in horrible pain praying to die

if the nsaids are removed from the market hundreds of thousands if not millions of people with arthritis and other chronic pain conditions, who could have otherwise functioned & had good lives, will be condemned to un-ending suffering

some will commit suicide as a result of the pain

all drugs have costs, all have side effects, but i'm angered by this attack on the nsaids

we don't need to be discouraging non-opiate alternatives to pain medication

this will be overturned but it's still the type of nuisance that discourages new drugs from being brought to market

i had chronic pain for yrs, i almost don't even want to hear from people who haven't been there, because they just don't know

to use one's husband's death as a lottery win is not very attractive

the lady is entitled to compensation, perhaps, but not $250 million
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
SOS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:30 PM
Response to Reply #9
30. Lawsuit awards are less than 1% of health "care" costs
Americans pay more for everything because we are charged more by a corrupt system.
An MRI in Germany costs $250. In the US it's $1,200. The difference has nothing to do with lawsuits.
If malpractice suits were capped at $250K the savings to the system would be 0.4%.

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/8551575 /

http://mediamatters.org/items/200411150001
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
short bus president Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:44 PM
Response to Reply #6
13. It is a punitive award, not compensatory
Merck willfully engaged in a coordinated coverup to keep silent data that showed safety issues with the drug long before it came up in clinical practice. Perhaps if the company had been forthright with the data, and accepted additional FDA restrictions on the drug (which would have cut into profits, though not eliminated them) a beneficial drug would still be on the market and the physicians prescribing it would have the full information necessary to safely monitor the patients prescribed it. It would appear that Merck eschewed this approach in favor of holding onto highly-profitable "wonderdrug" status for its Cox-2 inhibitor for as long as it could.

I personally think the safety issues with the cox-2 inhibtors are overblown - in terms of sheer numbers, far fewer people end up with cardiac complications from cox-2 inhibitors than end up with GI bleeds from the NSAID alternatives. Although the GI concerns make NSAIDS doubly profitable because H2RAs (Zantac, Tagamet, etc.) or Proton Pump Inhibitors ("the purple pill") are often prescribed alongside them. But the company fucked up in trying to quash the bad-news safety data. They deserve to face much higher punitive damages than were awarded in this case, IMO.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bluestateguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:11 PM
Response to Original message
8. Enter the lawyers
who will appeal this case to death.

I'll tell you one form of tort reform I would support: limits on appeals.

After the endless appeals, and after the scumbag lawyers take their cut, this woman will probably only get enough money to break even. The notion that she will be independently wealthy from this verdict is dishonest.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
GarySeven Donating Member (898 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #8
16. The plaintiff had a lawyer - could not have won without a lawyer
"scumbag" lawyers, as you and your fellow conservative fifth-columnists call them, created the consumer movement. Ralph Nader is/was a lawyer and the lawsuits he and thousands of other plaintiffs lawyers filed have made corporations responsible for the injuries and deaths caused by their defective products and medications. You and your fellow travellers are the first to label ANY lawsuit "frivolous" without even knowing what it means to bring a case to court, how many hurdles even the most simple suit has to pass. If you think this woman won a "jackpot" or a "lottery," then why don't you ask her whether she'd give anything to have her husband back. You conservative pigs make me puke.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
geckosfeet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 02:29 PM
Response to Original message
12. Merck : Ouchie. nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
ps1074 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 03:04 PM
Response to Original message
15. Shameful frivolous lawsuit
:sarcasm:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
GarySeven Donating Member (898 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 03:10 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. Poor, poor Merck ...
all they wanted to do was make a few bucks. Who cares if someone dies or suffers a stroke or brain damage? Who cares if they sue? Thanks to damages caps they can figure the cost of a few suits into the bottom line, then bump up the cost of the drugs to maintain quarterly projections. Damn all the lawyers anyway. If only the stupid court system would get out of the way, our capitalist innovators could find a way to hook third-world babies up to a power grid to run our factories!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
durablend Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 03:51 PM
Response to Reply #15
22. You just know the right is going to start railing on it...
"Frivolous lawsuits caused this innocent, godful company to go under and YOUR drug prices to go sky high"

Any day now...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DelawareValleyDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 04:09 PM
Response to Reply #22
25. Already begun.
Take a look at the Yahoo! message board for the article.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
winston61 Donating Member (642 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 03:16 PM
Response to Original message
18. Great! Now when
Edited on Fri Aug-19-05 03:16 PM by winston61
do the assholes at the FDA go on trial for their complicity?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Up2Late Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 03:42 PM
Response to Original message
19. UDPATE 2-Jury finds Merck at fault in Texas man's death (Reuters)

UDPATE 2-Jury finds Merck at fault in Texas man's death


Fri Aug 19, 2005 04:00 PM ET

By Matt Daily

ANGLETON, Texas (Reuters) - A jury in the first civil trial against Merck & Co.'s popular painkiller Vioxx on Friday found the pharmaceutical company liable for the 2001 death of a Texas man, awarding his widow a total of more than $250 million.

The 12-member jury in Texas state court awarded a $24 million penalty to Carol Ernst, the widow of Robert Ernst for mental anguish and loss of companionship and $229 million in punitive damages.

Merck shares fell $2.51, or about 8.25 percent, to $27.90. Merck's options trading volume spiked up as the verdict was announced in the trial, the first of more than 4,200 cases charging the drugmaker hid the heart attack and stroke risks of the blockbuster drug. Merck exerted the largest drag on the Dow, which was up about 6 percent in late afternoon trading at 10561.14, down from a session high of 10626.26.

"Everyone knew this was a hard case going in. The jurisdiction in which it was tried is very plaintiff friendly," said Brett Gallagher, a senior portfolio manager. "It probably was the most expected outcome, and now unfortunately the uncertainty drags on."

<http://go.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=topNews&st... >
(more at the link above)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Up2Late Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 03:47 PM
Response to Reply #19
21. (Original Report) Texas jury reaches verdict in Merck Vioxx case (Reuters)

Texas jury reaches verdict in Merck Vioxx case


Fri Aug 19, 2005 02:45 PM ET

ANGLETON, Texas (Reuters) - The jury in the first civil case against pharmaceutical company Merck & Co.'s painkiller Vioxx has reached a verdict, plaintiff's lawyer Mark Lanier said on Friday.

The jury is expected to return to the courtroom shortly.

The case pits the widow of Robert Ernst, who died in 2001 of an arrhythmia, or irregular heart beat, against the Whitehouse, New Jersey, drug company in the first of more than 4,200 cases charging the drugmaker hid the heart attack and stroke risks of the blockbuster drug.

Reuters 2005. All Rights Reserved.

<http://go.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=topNews&st... >
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
no_hypocrisy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 03:46 PM
Response to Original message
20. A Texas jury, no less.
There might be hope . . .
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RamboLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:20 PM
Response to Original message
26. Jury: Merck negligent (Vioxx $253 Million Judgement Texas Jury)
Edited on Fri Aug-19-05 05:00 PM by RamboLiberal
http://money.cnn.com/2005/08/19/news/fortune500/vioxx/i...

Merck has been held liable by a Texas jury in the first lawsuit involving its former blockbuster drug Vioxx, in a case that could have a profound effect on thousands of other cases filed against the company.

Plaintiff Carol Ernst has won her lawsuit in Texas Superior Court in Angleton, which blames Vioxx for the 2001 death of her husband, Robert Ernst, a 59-year-old marathon runner and Wal-Mart worker who was taking the arthritis painkiller at the time of his death. Ernst died of a heart attack.

The verdict held Merck liable for the death. Jurors voted 10-2 in favor of Ernst.

The jury awarded more than $250 million in total damages -- a $24 million penalty to Carol Ernst for mental anguish and loss of companionship and $229 million in punitive damages. Ernst's Houston-based lawyer, Mark Lanier, said the punitive-damages figure was based on "the money Merck made and saved by putting off their product label changes."

<snip>

Lanier argued that Merck had concealed information about the health risks associated with the drug in order to protect sales. Lanier has used colorful analogies in his portrayal of Merck, which he has compared to Saddam Hussein and the three monkeys who see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
blue sky at night Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:20 PM
Response to Reply #26
27. I can't help but be gleeful..........
fuck the bastards, I hope they go out of business over this. People died and they tried to cover it up. Roughly 4000 cases x 2.5 million.......you do the math. Ok, I'll do the math, that's a 1 with 9 zeros after it, or 1,000,000,000......is that a trillion!!!???? Oh my, we only put aside 6.5 million to defend ourselves.........bye, bye.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
MSgt213 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:20 PM
Response to Reply #27
29. Yea do the math because them greedy asses sure did
They won't go out of business because they have already figure the cost of all these law suits into the cost of the pills. So all though poor folks that used it are going to wind up paying. These assholes are not going to suffer a bit.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
ironman202 Donating Member (608 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:20 PM
Response to Reply #26
28. don't go spending it yet; what's the knock down number?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
LincolnMcGrath Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:47 PM
Response to Reply #28
33. Texas tort reform laws will limit the award to 1.6 mill.
The pain and suffering (24 mill) will be reduced as well. Most likely by 90%.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RebelOne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:36 PM
Response to Original message
31. Good, I am glad they have finally been held responsible.
My next door neighbor, Veta. died from a heart attack at 57 and she had been taking Vioxx. Unfortunately, at the time of her death, her son was in jail for a parole violation charge and was not able to pursue any investigation and Veta's mother had her cremated, so there was no proof. But I was the one who found her body and also discovered the Vioxx pills in her house.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
LincolnMcGrath Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:42 PM
Response to Original message
32. Texas has *Tort Caps* people! 1.6 mill will be all she is eligible for.
I heard on the way home that lost wages was set at 400,000 in Texas. (Hell, I made that before age 30) She was awarded around 24 mill for pain and suffering, and IT WILL BE REDUCED, Count on it.!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
City Lights Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 05:52 PM
Response to Original message
34. Stick it to Merck!
I know someone who works for Merck and all this person does is complain about the "bad press" Merck received, and about the evils of government regulations. Never mentions a word about the lives ruined because of Merck's deceit. All that matters is the company's image, profit margins, and the employee's stock portfolios. Screw them, bigtime!

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Jane Eyre Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 06:04 PM
Response to Original message
36. Won by a Republican trial lawyer
Seems like an oxymoron to me, but that is what I heard on CNN. The case was tried in Tom DeLay's district and the plaintiff was represented by a Republican trial lawyer. This particular lawyer also has a few hundred other Vioxx clients apparently, and this has Merck very worried.

Another anomaly with this trial that should have Merck scared is that this was a younger jury, not a bunch of retirees who depend upon safe prescription drugs to stay alive.

Very, very bad news for Merck.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RebelOne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 06:12 PM
Response to Reply #36
37. Guess Republicans are good for something at times.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
cal04 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-19-05 08:14 PM
Response to Original message
38. Vioxx Jurors Sought to Send a Message With Verdict
Jurors who found Merck & Co. liable Friday for the death of a Texas man said they expected pharmaceutical companies to get the message from their $253.4 million verdict that consumers need safe drugs. "They needed to be held accountable for putting a drug out there that shouldn't be out there," said Stacy Smith, a 21-year-old child care provider who stood with the majority in the 10-2 vote in favor of the man's widow, Carol Ernst.

"I want them to listen," said Marsha Robbins, a 53-year-old homemaker who was the presiding juror and the oldest of the panel. One of the two dissenters, 46-year-old chemical company technician James Fruidenberg, said he never wavered from his belief that neither Merck nor Vioxx was responsible for Ernst's death. He sided with Merck's case that clogged arteries, not the drug, killed Ernst.

"I couldn't go with the probabilities," he said, referring to Carol Ernst's contention that a Vioxx-induced heart attack caused her husband's death, but that he died too quickly for the heart to show damage.

http://ap.tbo.com/ap/breaking/MGBCZ5R4LCE.html
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Wed Jul 18th 2018, 11:21 PM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Latest Breaking News Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC