For years, Bayer has been paying settlements to women who were hospitalized for blood clots, DVT and pulmonary embolism while taking the birth control drugs Yaz or Yasmin.
In fact, recent company records show they have now paid out over $1.8 billion to almost 9,000 victims over Yaz blood clots, at an average of more than $200,000 per case. By doing so, Bayer avoided litigation and public attention in thousands of cases.
However, this month U.S. District Judge David Herndon, who presides over the Yaz cases in a special federal court, scheduled many to begin trial in 2015 after he found settlement discussions weren’t progressing quickly enough.
Judge Herndon ordered that a number of unresolved cases involving arterial blood clots and similar injuries begin trials in May of 2015. He issued the order after commenting that one or both sides may not be engaging in good faith negotiations for settlement.
This could affect nearly 2,500 cases, although Bayer has objected to many of these staying in Herndon’s court. Lawyers for Yaz victims have asked that the new trials begin with the selection of “bellwether” or test cases to gauge the viability of evidence.
DrugNews applauds Judge Herndon’s move to facilitate quicker resolution of these remaining Yaz lawsuits, and hopes this will lead to settlements for more Yaz and Yasmin victims.
For now, lawyers are still accepting cases on behalf of those who suffered blood clots, DVTs, stroke and pulmonary embolism while taking Yaz, Yasmin, and several generic versions prior to June 2012.
Last summer, the Department of Justice unveiled the details of an ongoing lawsuit and resulting settlement against industrial giant 3M, claiming the company had furnished defective combat earplugs to millions of U.S. troops serving around the world.
The FDA enacted tough new regulations this week aimed at making sure all women who are considering implantation of the Essure birth control device fully understand all the risks and benefits before moving forward.