Sometimes when I read the newspaper and see what greedy corporations are capable of, well, it makes me sick. This blog post is about a greedy corporation that literally made people sick.
The recent Meningitis outbreak you’ve been reading about is caused by contaminated spinal steroid injections. Many of my clients have had this type of steroid injection for back pain. A batch of steroid contaminated with a type of black mold called Exserohilum is causing the Meningitis. The manufacturer, “New England Compounding Center” in Framingham, Massachusetts caused the contamination by allowing dirty, sloppy conditions to prevail in the steroid production process
Cutting safety corners, in this case simple rules of hygiene, is always unacceptable, but when the product you are selling is getting injected into your customers’ spines?! Come on!!
Now meet a few of the victims. A mother and daughter, the Liteskis, were featured in a New York Times article this week, titled, “Worried Sick: Meningitis Risk Haunts 14,000”. They have both recently learned the steroid injections they received may be from the contaminated batch.
Now the Liteskis have to bite their nails while they wait out the “incubation period”, which can be several months. If they turn out to be among the “lucky” ones, then the won’t actually have to get sick and die. Instead, they will just have to fear and worry about death and serious illness for a few months. Boy, won’t they be lucky!
As the article’s title makes clear, they are “worried sick”. The fear actually makes them sick! They feel that every new twinge of pain or headache is the onset of the deadly meningitis.
Yes, they will die a thousand deaths in these few months.
So far, 282 have contracted meningitis from the contaminated steroid injections and of those 23 have died. Do the math. If you get sick, you have about a one in 10 chance of dying from it. Those might be good odds for a horse race, but when you’re betting on your life, not good enough.
Long ago our civilized society discarded the old eye-for-an-eye justice system. If that system were still in play, we would inject the spines of the CEO, the safety officer, and others at “New England Compounding Center”, with the contaminated steroids. Then we would watch them squirm, just like the Liteskis.
No, we have moved beyond that form of justice. New York personal injury lawyers like me just ask juries for money to compensate, not revenge. And I hope the Liteskis get lost of it, even if they never get “sick” from the meningitis, but only from the fear and worry.
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