March 14, 2009
It's hard to imagine a more sympathetic victim than Diana Levine, a guitarist who lost her arm to gangrene after she was negligently injected with Phenergan, an anti-nausea drug. Last week, the Supreme Court by a 6-3 vote upheld a Vermont jury's decision that Wyeth, the manufacturer of the drug, should pay Levine nearly $7 million because the label on the drug didn't adequately warn medical personnel about the risk of a particular method of injection.
December 20, 2008
It's tempting to judge a U.S. Supreme Court decision by whether it favors the "good guys." By that populist standard, the court made the right call this week when it ruled 5 to 4 that tobacco companies could be sued in state courts for minimizing the health dangers of "light" cigarettes. But by more important measures -- including basic fairness and a respect for Congress' power over interstate commerce -- the majority got it wrong.
November 4, 2008 |
On the day before the nation elects a new president, the Supreme Court debated an important legal legacy of the outgoing Bush administration. Two years ago, the administration said drug makers should be shielded from being sued by injured patients if federal regulators had approved warning labels that weigh the risks of a prescription drug. Until then, consumers in most states could sue if they were hurt by a dangerous product, even if it had been approved by the federal government.
October 7, 2008 |
More than 45 million Americans are smokers, and nearly 85% of them buy "light" cigarettes such as Marlboro Lights, which are advertised as having lower tar and nicotine. The Supreme Court, on the opening day of its term, heard arguments Monday on whether the tobacco industry can be held liable for allegedly perpetrating a massive fraud on the smoking public. In recent decades, many smokers switched to "light" cigarettes, believing they posed less of a danger to their health.
May 26, 2008 |
Are WE really living that much longer than previous generations did? I don't think so. The insurance industry's actuarial tables may say we are, but I've never understood that industry's mathematical models of anything, especially billing. Take the case of my 81-year-old mother and 83-year-old father. Except for my mother having lung cancer and my father being unable to walk farther than 30 feet, both of my parents are in excellent health. They are both employed nearly full time at the job of maintaining this excellent health and of managing the more troublesome parts (such as the lung cancer and being unable to walk more than 30 feet)
January 19, 2008 |
The Supreme Court signaled Friday that it may be ready to shield drug companies and cigarette makers from lawsuits from consumers who say they were not fully warned of the dangers of the product. The justices voted to hear a pair of appeals from industry lawyers that, if upheld, would erect a new barrier to lawsuits.
October 14, 2006
Re "U.S. Rules Allow the Sale of Products Others Ban," Oct. 8 The fact that our country imports and uses carcinogenic-containing plywood banned in Europe, Japan and even China is another kick in the teeth to the American image. We already have ample proof that voluntary restraints do not work. Yes, a few good companies build to the highest standard but, as your article plainly shows, many do not. U.S. innovators such as Columbia Forest Products get the short end of the stick when the competition can ship carcinogen-containing products.
September 23, 2006 |
The government's drug safety system is seriously out of balance, devoting too much attention to approving new medications and not enough follow-up to uncovering risky side effects, a blue-ribbon scientific panel concluded in a major report released Friday. Convened at the request of the Food and Drug Administration after a popular painkiller was linked to heart attacks, the experts in medicine, pharmacology, law and other fields issued a sweeping call for reform.
March 23, 2006
In arguing that California's food regulators should be permitted to enforce stricter standards than what federal government scientists believe is prudent, Al Meyerhoff and Carl Pope cited the well-worn example of mercury in fish (Opinion, March 21). If the authors were familiar with the scientific literature on the subject, they would know the reason why Food and Drug Administration scientists seldom enforce the "action level" for mercury in fish. In the FDA's own words, the action level was established to limit consumers' mercury exposure "to levels 10 times lower than the lowest levels associated with adverse effects."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 17, 2005 |
A California environmental group filed notices Thursday that it planned to sue food manufacturers to require them to put warnings on potato chips, which contain high amounts of a cancer-causing chemical formed when starchy foods are cooked at high temperatures. The state's anti-toxics law, Proposition 65, requires companies to warn consumers about products containing chemicals known to cause cancer or birth defects.