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Amtrak worker dies of extensive burn injuries in Indianapolis

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An Amtrak worker who was badly burned in an accident at the railroad company’s suburban Indianapolis maintenance facility Saturday died Sunday morning while be treated for his extensive injuries. Indiana authorities investigating the incident have not yet released details about what happened. A statement from Amtrak President and CEO Joseph Boardman only acknowledged that an “industrial accident” had occurred around 11:40 a.m. Saturday at the rail company’s Beech Grove maintenance facility. The victim, identified by the Marion County Coroner’s Office as 27-year-old Andrew Swanson of Fishers, Ind., had sustained extensive thermal burn injuries in the accident. Mr. Swanson died Sunday ... Read More

IRS data breach class action alleges the government failed to protect citizen data

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The IRS data breach, which has affected about 330,000 Americans to date, may have even more serious repercussions on the government agency, including a class action lawsuit now brewing behind the scenes. According to Forbes, Beck Welborn and Wendy Windrich, both taxpayers negatively impacted by the cyberattack, filed the lawsuit both individually and on behalf of a proposed class action to allege that the agency was aware of the website’s security issues. The defendants named in the lawsuit are the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and IRS Commissioner John A. Koskinen. “What should have been a trustworthy digital service had been ... Read More

Lawsuit alleges airplane defects caused crash that killed three Kansas doctors

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The family of two Kansas physicians killed when their airplane crashed in Palos Hills, Ill., last October has filed a lawsuit against the plane’s manufacturer, alleging the crash was a result of airplane defects. The complaint alleges the aircraft was “negligently designed, manufactured, and assembled.” The Beechcraft Baron was headed to Topeka, Kan., when it crashed Oct. 12, 2014 about five minutes after taking off from Chicago Midway International Airport. The airplane’s three occupants, neurosurgeon Tausif Ur Rehman, pulmonologist Ali A. Kanchwala, and Dr. Kanchwala’s wife Maria Javaid, an interventional cardiologist, died on impact. All three doctors were originally from Pakistan. ... Read More

Study: Statin side effects caused by damaged stem cells

lipitor

Cholesterol-lowering statins prevent stem cells from growing into beneficial bone and cartilage cells, increase stem cell aging and death rates, and diminish the cells’ ability to repair DNA, which translates into side effects including memory loss, muscle problems and type 2 diabetes, according to new research. Dr. Eckhard Alt, director of cardiovascular research at Tulane University says he has identified the process that causes statin side effects, and it involves harming vital stem cells. The findings, he says, should “balance your decision to take statins a little more critical.” Statins, such as the widely prescribed Lipitor, are designed to lower ... Read More

Amgen To Pay $71 Million For Illegal Drug Promotions

Pills - Stethoscope on Money

California-based drugmaker Amgen has agreed to pay $71 million to 49 states and the District of Columbia to resolve allegations that it misbranded two of its blockbuster drugs, Aranesp and Enbrel, by pushing them for purposes unapproved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The settlement resolves some of the same allegations that were settled in a $762-million agreement between Amgen and the federal government in December 2012. That case stemmed from whistleblower lawsuits that alleged that Amgen promoted its anemia drug Aranesp at higher doses and more frequent intervals than allowed by the FDA in order to increase ... Read More

Xarelto linked to major bleeding events

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Gloria Glatz, 88, didn’t let her advancing age keep her from being active. She played Scrabble religiously, enjoyed vising the casino, and was known for whipping up a mean batch of potato salad. When she was diagnosed with a common heart rhythm abnormality known as atrial fibrillation, a condition that causes the blood to clot in the heart, increasing the risk for stroke, instead of treating her with the long-used blood thinner warfarin, her doctors opted for a newer treatment, Xarelto. Introduced in 2011, Xarelto was one of the first drugs in a new class of anticoagulants designed to be ... Read More

Judge upholds $3.27 million verdict against transvaginal mesh maker

transvaginal mesh

Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Ethicon Inc., failed to convince a West Virginia federal judge to strike a $3.27 million jury verdict in a bellwether lawsuit alleging the company failed to warn that its transvaginal mesh device could cause serious injuries. Ethicon had argued for a new trial based on insufficient evidence to support the verdict. However, U.S. District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin refused to budge off the jury’s verdict, adding that not only did the evidence show that the plaintiff’s doctor was not sufficiently warned by the company about complications with the TVT-O polypropylene transvaginal mesh, but that evidence regarding ... Read More

FDA cites duodenoscope makers for safety violations

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The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) took a first step toward formal legal action against manufacturers of specialized endoscopes called duodenoscopes linked to outbreaks of deadly drug-resistant bacterial infections at some hospitals, issuing warning letters citing manufacturing safety violations. The warning letters were sent to Olympus, Pentax and FujiFilm for various manufacturing and quality control violations. Olympus and Pentax were also cited for not properly notifying the FDA after learning their scopes were linked to infections. The agency also questioned whether Pentax and FujiFilm obtained proper clearance for their duodenoscopes before marketing them. Olympus was previously cited for this issue, the ... Read More

The Fraud List: Adventist Health System demonstrates a history of health care fraud

The Fraud List

Adventist Health System is a non-profit health care organization run by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The Altamonte Springs, Fla.-based organization network encompasses about 45 hospital campuses in 10 Southern and Midwestern states in addition to a number of urgent care centers, home health care and hospice centers, and nursing homes, making it the largest Protestant-affiliated non-profit health care provider in the U.S. Adventist Health says its organization “incorporates Christian values at every level of service” and conducts its business “with integrity, honesty and fairness,” yet somehow these values have led it into numerous multimillion-dollar settlements to resolve allegations of fraud, most ... Read More

Fitness center faces lawsuit from ‘Low T’ provider

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Life Time Fitness is facing lawsuits from a pharmaceutical provider after its plans to establish an in-house Low T Center to help boost testosterone levels in its members flopped. LowT Holdings is suing Life Time Fitness in federal court for breach of contract. Testosterone therapy has become a booming business for drug companies in recent years. Aggressive marketing campaigns and coining the phrase “Low T” to lure men to their doctors to ask for treatments by name has resulted in skyrocketing sales of the male hormone. Advertisements promise the benefits of boosting low testosterone levels can include everything from an increase ... Read More