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Today’s guest post is by Jim Fraser of Greenberg Traurig.  Jim is a long-time product liability defense lawyer, but who also worked as a litigation attorney in FDA’s Office of the Chief Counsel (“OCC”).  Utilizing his FDA perspective, he offers some useful suggestions on the regulatory aspects of defending drug or medical device product liability cases.  As always, our guest-posters are 100% responsible for what they wrote, deserving all of the credit and (any) of the blame.

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Lawyers defending drug and medical device companies in product liability litigation routinely deal with FDA-related issues.  For example, they present expert witnesses to testify that their clients complied with the applicable regulatory requirements, they move to exclude purportedly “bad” FDA documents (e.g., FDA Form 483s and Warning Letters), and they file summary judgment motions arguing that the FDCA or FDA regulations preempt plaintiffs’ claims.

Continue Reading Guest Post – What a Product Liability Defense Lawyer Learned While Working for FDA.

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Today’s guest post is from Reed Smith‘s Micah Brown. He discusses a recent appellate decision that we think is counterproductive, in that it interprets the federal Anti-Kickback statute to preclude drug manufacturers from alleviating the high expense of breakthrough drugs that treat relatively rare medical conditions. As always our guest bloggers deserve 100% of the credit (and any blame) for what they have to say.

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Illustrating the principle that hard cases make bad law, a panel of the Second Circuit in July unanimously upheld a Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) advisory opinion that a drug manufacturer’s plan to offer significant cost-sharing support for Medicare beneficiaries who use a life-saving, but expensive, drug was unlawful.  The Second Circuit agreed with the OIG that the manufacturer’s proposal could constitute prohibited remuneration under the Federal Anti-Kickback Statute, 42 U.S.C. § 1320a-7b (“AKS”).  Pfizer, Inc. v. United States HHS, 42 F.4th 67 (2d Cir. 2022).  The manufacturer sought to cover Medicare patients’ Part D cost-sharing obligations for the drug – which were estimated at approximately $13,000 per year – but the OIG said “no thanks,” and the Second Circuit has affirmed that outcome.

Continue Reading Guest Post – Second Circuit Rejects Manufacturer’s Plan to Share Cost of Expensive Drug with Medicare Part D Beneficiaries

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An interesting issue recently arose (but was not resolved) in In re: Proton-Pump Inhibitor Products Liability Litigation, 2022 WL 2188038 (D.N.J. June 17, 2022) (“PPI”).  The ability of an FDA expert witness to testify was challenged under 18 U.S.C. §207, a federal conflict of interest statute.  We have never seen that statute invoked in connection with an ex-FDA witness before, and apparently neither has anyone else, since the opinion observes that “the fact pattern presented here is something of an unprecedented issue.”  Id. at *4 (citation and quotation marks omitted).  So we thought we’d alert our readers.

Continue Reading Regulatory Witnesses – Something Else To Watch

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Although it is not a drug/device case (if it were, we would have discussed it before now), the recent Supreme Court decision in Gallardo v. Marstiller142 S. Ct. 1751 (2022), raises some interesting issues that attorneys defending personal injury action of any sort should consider.  Settlement of any personal injury case involving a

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The Orthopedic Bone Screw litigation would never have occurred – and Bexis might never have found his way to prescription medical product liability litigation – if not for the Kessler-era FDA’s ill-considered salami slicing of the “intended use” of that product.  In that instance, the FDA had limited its cleared “intended use” to disc spaces

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Last week the Third Circuit became the first federal appellate court to decide the question of whether federal courts have jurisdiction over COVID-related tort litigation.  It concluded they did not.  Maglioli v. Alliance HC Holdings LLC, — F.4th –, 2021 WL 4890189 (3d. Cir. Oct. 20, 2021).  A decision directly at odds with

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Today’s case, Bradley v. CVS Pharmacy, Inc., 2021 Cal. App. LEXIS 451, 2021 WL 2176797 (Cal. Ct. App. May 28, 2021), is not about drug or device product liability, but its discussion of deference to administrative agencies is interesting. There are several different but closely related doctrines that either require or permit judicial deference

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With apologies, this time, to Sir Paul − “The circuit judge, who held a grudge, has put the FDA’s banned on the run. . . .”

That’s just about what happened in Judge Rotenberg Educational Center, Inc. v. United States FDA, ___ F.4th ___, 2021 WL 2799891 (D.C. Cir. July 6, 2021) (note the

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First of all, get your minds out of the gutter.  Second, remember two weeks ago when we noted how rarely we discuss lawsuits against FDA?  We are doing it again.  Third, although we have talked about the strange regulatory shadowland in which homeopathic drugs have resided, they have not seen much action in litigation.  When

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When we think about litigation involving the FDA, our first thought is about preemption of claims brought by product liability plaintiffs.  Our second is probably the relatively recent line of cases where these plaintiffs would like no mention of FDA’s existence, let alone its requirements and actions, during the trial on their claims.  However, there