The administration contends that consumers cannot recover damages for such injuries if the products have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration. In court papers, the Justice Department acknowledges that this position reflects a "change in governmental policy," and it has persuaded some judges to accept its arguments, most recently scoring a victory in the federal appeals court in Philadelphia.
Allowing consumers to sue manufacturers would "undermine public health" and interfere with federal regulation of drugs and devices, by encouraging "lay judges and juries to second-guess" experts at the F.D.A., the government said in siding with the maker of a heart pump sued by the widow of a Pennsylvania man. Moreover, it said, if such lawsuits succeed, some good products may be removed from the market, depriving patients of beneficial treatments.
The administration said its position, holding that individual consumers have no right to sue, actually benefited consumers.
The threat of lawsuits, it said, "can harm the public health" by encouraging manufacturers to withdraw products from the market or to issue new warnings that overemphasize the risks and lead to "underutilization of beneficial treatments."
Bush administration officials said their goal was not to shield drug companies, but to vindicate the federal government's authority to regulate drug products.
( Of course, it is difficult to find any mention of the government having the authority to regulate drugs in the US Constitution.)
In other words, the Bush administration has decided to take taxpayers money and use the money to defend drug and medical device manufacturers when bad things happen to consumers. This is the Bush idea of warped tort reform through the filing of amica-curia briefs on behalf of the defendant drug company or medical device manufacturer.
Your tax dollars at work for your benefit - even if you do not benefit - and never asked for the benefit.
Ron Getty SF Libertarian
Richard Newell <richard@...> wrote:
Ron Getty wrote:
The Bush Adminstration in its move for tort reform is now blocking suits against drugs or medical devices where things go wrong. The reasoning is the FDA approved the drug or medical device so suits shouldn't happen because the drug or medical device worked when approved by the FDA.
When the Republicans say "tort reform", I hear "corporate protectionism".
I wonder how they are legally blocking the suits, though.