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Judge Files Whistleblower Complaint Accusing California Regulators of Retaliation

whistleblower retaliation

The former chief administrative law judge at the California Public Utilities Commission is filing a whistleblower complaint against the utility regulator, alleging she was fired for cooperating with federal investigators probing the Commission’s lax oversight of Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E). According to The Mercury News, Judge Karen Valentina Clopton claims the Utilities Commission dismissed her from her top-ranking judicial position in August in retaliation for her cooperation with federal investigators probing the 2010 natural gas explosion that destroyed a San Bruno, California neighborhood. The explosion occurred when an old 30-inch natural gas pipeline ruptured underneath a suburban neighborhood just ... Read More

Ninth resident of Florida nursing home dies after Irma

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A ninth resident has died as a result of injuries suffered in the Hollywood, Florida, nursing home that lost its air conditioning for days after Hurricane Irma ripped through the state. The 93-year-old man was evacuated last week with the other residents of Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills after authorities discovered three patients had died in the facility, where temperatures had risen to dangerous levels. By that afternoon, five more patients had died and dozens more were treated for dehydration, breathing difficulties and other heat-related symptoms. The dead ranged in age from 71 to 99, and all appeared to have ... Read More

New program to test supplements sold online

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A new model made possible by e-commerce can help reassure consumers that the dietary supplements they buy online do not contain hidden or dangerous ingredients. The program provides independent testing of products through sites that analyze, rank, and sell their products – information the consumer has access to. The cost for testing the supplements is built into the sales price from referral links. Nearly 90 percent of supplements and vitamins are sold offline by companies such as GNC and Herbalife, but e-commerce is beginning to win consumers over. The verification program can offer consumers peace of mind that the supplement ... Read More

Movie Producers Seek Indemnity In Fatal Airplane-Crash Suits

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An airplane crash that killed two men and seriously injured a third while filming the Tom Cruise movie American Made in 2015 has spawned multiple lawsuits, including one filed Sept. 8 by four production companies seeking indemnity for damages awarded against them in other lawsuits. The lawsuit, filed in California, seeks to hold S&S Aviation, a Georgia company responsible for maintaining the airplane that crashed, at least partly responsible for any damages and lawyer fees resulting from the wrongful death and personal injury claims the production companies face. The movie “American Made” is set to be released later this month. It ... Read More

Lawsuits indicate 2015 Study on Celect IVC Filters is Accurate

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According to a 2015 study, 43 percent of Celect IVC filters were found to perforate the vein in two months or less. This could lead to the filter leg snaring a nearby organ, such as in the case of one woman whose filter pierced through the vein wall and stabbed through her duodenum. “The Celect filter had a significantly higher rate of strut perforation,” the study concludes. On July 31, 2017 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, a new lawsuit was filed against Cook Medical, the maker of the Celect retrievable inferior vena cava (IVC) filter, The Daily Hornet reports. ... Read More

New Orleans Woman Convicted for Fraudulent Medicare Kickbacks

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A New Orleans woman has been convicted of multiple criminal charges for her involvement in a Medicare fraud scheme to obtain illegal kickbacks for referring mentally ill Medicare beneficiaries to home health agencies in and around New Orleans. After a two-day trial, a Louisiana federal jury found Kim Ricard guilty of conspiracy, identity theft, and making false statements to law enforcement in connection with her part in the illegal kickback scheme, which reaped about $2.1 million from the government health care program, the U.S. Department of Justice announced. Federal prosecutors alleged at trial that in addition to engaging in the ... Read More

Florida nursing home resident files negligence lawsuit

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A 94-year-old woman who lived at the Hollywood, Florida nursing home where eight residents died after Hurricane Irma knocked out the air conditioning, is suing the rehabilitation center over claims that the facility was negligent and showed reckless indifference toward the vulnerable patients who lived there. The lawsuit was filed by the legal guardian of Rosa Cabrera against Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills. Cabrera is a double amputee who relies on round-the-clock skilled care. When the facility’s electrical system went out, shutting down the air conditioning, management did not protect residents despite being located just across the street from a ... Read More

Korea adds severe skin reaction warning to Xarelto

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Korea’s Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS) is requiring an update to the safety label of the blood thinner Xarelto to include new warnings regarding the risk of the serious and sometimes fatal skin reactions known as Stevens Johnson Syndrome (SJS) and toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN). The warning comes after the European Commission issued a public safety alert regarding serious skin conditions with Xarelto. Most side effects were reported within the first week of treatment. The ministry collected opinions and reviewed them last month and determined that the warnings should also come with a recommendation for doctors to discontinue ... Read More

Whistleblower Helps U.S. Recover $4M From NY Hospital Operator

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The corporate owner-operator of two Queens, New York, hospitals has agreed to pay $4 million to settle a whistleblower lawsuit alleging it unlawfully billed Medicare for services forged from unlawful financial relationships with referring doctors. According to the whistleblower lawsuit, MediSys Health Network, Inc., which owns and operates Flushing Hospital Medical Center and Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, violated the False Claims Act by failing to comply with the requirements of the Stark Law, which restricts the financial relationships that hospitals may have with the physicians who refer patients to them. “When hospital operators provide financial incentives to doctors for patient referrals, ... Read More

Lilly discontinues Axiron testosterone solutions

Axiron

Eli Lilly & Co. is discontinuing two of its Axiron testosterone replacement therapy solutions and its authorized generic testosterone solution because there are multiple manufacturers that are currently selling the products, according to MPR. The discontinued products include Axiron 30mg /1.5mL with the NDC 0002-1975-90, Axiron 30mg/1.5mL with the NDC 0002-1975-61, and generic testosterone 30mg/1.5mL with the NDC 66993-963-89. Axiron solution is an androgen used to treat adult men with congenital or acquired primary hypogonadiasm or hypogonadotropic hypogonadism. It is supplied as a 90mL pump containing 60 metered pump or twist actuations with an applicator. Eli Lilly claims that the ... Read More