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FDA accuses Chinese companies of lying about role in heparin scandal

The Food and Drug Administrating (FDA) is accusing two Chinese pharmaceutical manufacturing companies of lying to federal regulators about their role in shipping batches of contaminated heparin into the United States between 2007 and 2008, according to Easy Bourse. Letters sent by the FDA to Qingdao Jiulong Biopharmaceuticals Co. Ltd. and Shanghai No. 1 Biochemical & Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., says that during inspection of the plants in 2008, the agency “uncovered untrue statements and information by your firm to the agency.” In late 2007 the FDA began receiving reports of patients experiencing severe reactions after receiving injections of the blood ... Read More

Newspaper managing editor calls sister with SJS a hero

Mark Cripps’ sister Lisa has fought for much in her life. She is now in for what may be the fight of her life. As a young child, Lisa contracted pneumonia and spent a month in the hospital. She grew up with an abusive stepmother and struggled through a difficult marriage. Despite the obstacles, she managed to raise two children and find a career in real estate. But last week, the young woman with an infectious personality, hit another road block. She was diagnosed with Stevens Johnson Syndrome (SJS), an adverse reaction to antibiotics prescribed to her following minor surgery. ... Read More

California maid company fined for ignoring 2007 ruling

Violating the rules of employment set forth in the Fair Labor Standards Act can be an expensive way to do business. In August of 2007, a federal judge in the U.S. Central District Court for California in Santa Ana ordered Southern California Maid Services Inc. to pay nearly $3.5 million in back wages and another $1 million in liquidated damages to 385 of its employees. The court ruled that by improperly classifying their workers as independent contractors, Sergio Maldonado and Lorenza Rubio, the company owners, avoided paying minimum wage and overtime, which the FLSA requires. Then, last week, after finding ... Read More

Woman disappointed in judge’s treatment of abusive nursing aide

The punishment didn’t fit the crime in the eyes of the victim’s stepdaughter. She expressed her disappointment with the judge’s decision during a lengthy address at a court hearing. But the decision stood. In January 2008, two employees at Radius Health Care Center in Quincy, Maine, saw their co-worker Elizabeth Landry, a 25-year-old nursing assistant, slapping a man on the head with an open hand, swearing at him and calling him and obscene name. She also reportedly pulled the man out of his wheelchair and threw him into a bed. The man was a stroke victim and used a wheelchair ... Read More

OK nursing home closes amid allegations of abuse, neglect

Silver Lake Care Center of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, voluntarily closed its doors earlier this month after mounting complaints of physical and verbal abuse, financial woes, unresolved staffing issues, and numerous lawsuits alleging neglect and wrongful death, according to the News Examiner-Enterprise. Investigators cited the nursing home in February saying it failed “to screen for, prevent, identify, report and investigate abuse.” Former director of nursing Terri Conley said she resigned from the home in January because the home was severely understaffed. “If you don’t have enough staff, the residents are not going to get the care they need,” she told the newspaper. ... Read More

Child is helpless victim of mother’s use of Paxil during pregnancy

Christine K’s newborn baby spent her first four days of life hooked up to tubes in an incubator at a hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit, a helpless victim of her mother’s longtime use of antidepressants prior to and for the first six months of her pregnancy. Christine K had been prescribed a combination of Paxil, Risperdal and Depakote five years prior to becoming pregnant. While pregnant she read that Paxil could be harmful to her unborn baby. She asked her doctor take her off the meds, but he insisted she stay on them. Christine K did more research on the ... Read More

Product liability lawsuit filed against Digitek manufacturer, distributor

Linda Weadock, on behalf of her deceased husband George Weadock, and Willie Criss and Frank Heppel, have filed a $5 million product liability lawsuit against drug maker Actavis and drug distributor Mylan Pharmaceuticals, claiming their heart medication Digitek contained more than twice the active ingredient and caused serious injury or death. Digitek, a brand of digoxin, is a widely used treatment for various heart conditions such as atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter and heart failure. According to the complaint, the companies received a warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that they failed to provide periodic safety reports for the facility ... Read More

AIG’s self indulgence linked to Unum’s former CEO

Remember the $165 million in bonuses that American International Group (AIG) awarded to its executives after accepting more than $170 billion in federal bailout money? Those bonuses, which have become a symbol of corporate greed and self-indulgence in the eyes of many Americans, were approved by former Unum CEO James F. Orr. Orr is now an AIG director and serves as chairman of its “executive compensation committee.” Now several owners of AIG stock, including the leaders of big union and pension funds, are requesting the removal of Orr from AIG’s directorship. The stock owners made their appeal to the three AIG ... Read More

IIHS puts first 12 vehicles through new roof crush rating system

In February, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety raised the bar on the auto industry, announcing that it would require automobiles to withstand 4 times their own weight in a static roof crush test to qualify as contenders for the institute’s highest vehicle safety ranking. The test, also known as strength-to-weight ratio, has made the IIHS “Top Safety Pick” rating a little harder to earn. But that is good news for the consumer, as the auto industry covets good IIHS grades. Car manufacturers generally will work harder and make the improvements they need to make in order to earn higher ... Read More

TVA leaves some coal ash spill victims high and dry

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has paid more than $20 million buying 71 properties in the east Tennessee community that were affected by the December 2008 coal ash impoundment breach. And while TVA is negotiating to buy more, it has already turned down 160 other offers from residents in the area, according to Forbes/Associated Press. “We are trying to balance between doing the right thing by the people that were impacted by this (and) keeping in mind that this is ratepayer money,” TVA senior vice president Peyton Hairston told The Associated Press last week. The buyout is part of a ... Read More