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JnJ Faulty Hip Implants: 7 more patients found fit for compensation

JnJ Faulty Hip Implants: 7 more patients found fit for compensation

Mumbai: Several patients who claim to be suffering due to faulty hip implants manufactured by Johnson and Johnson (JnJ) have been claiming compensation. According to a recent media report, the state panel is deliberating the matter and has come across 7 more cases legible to seek compensation.

It has been learnt that these seven patients are currently in the process of collecting documents before their files are referred to Delhi for further proceedings.

Early this month, Medical Dialogues had reported that based on the recommendations of the central expert committee and the state-level committee, the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) had directed JnJ to pay Rs 74,57,180 to the first patient from Mumbai who received faulty hip implants made by the company.

This was the first case where M/s Johnson & Johnson had been directed to pay compensation for its faulty ASR hip implants manufactured and imported by M/s DePuy International Limited (now Johnson & Johnson Pvt Ltd).

Also Read: Landmark: JnJ told to pay Rs 74.5 lakh to patient by CDSCO

The matter originated in the year 2010, wherein a hip replacement device namely DePuy ASR was recalled over reports of metal poisoning and high failures due to the presence of toxic chromium, cobalt and a design flaw that filtered into the body, causing danger to lives. It was sold in India by DePuy International, a subsidiary of J&J.

The company J&J recalled the faulty metal-on-metal ASR hip implants in 2010 globally after studies red-flagged the high rate of revision surgeries. However, the damage was done as several patients were affected by the faulty implants already.

In February 2016, the Government formed a panel led by Dr Arun Kumar Agarwal, former dean of Maulana Azad Medical College to investigate the case as India has no specific legal provisions to pay compensation in such cases.

With the development of the matter, the government in 2017 constituted the central expert panel to investigate the complaints about ASR hip implant devices.

It was decided that state-level committees would screen cases fit for compensation. They would then forward these cases to the central committee in Delhi, which along with Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), would take a call on the compensation amount. The compensation range has been fixed at Rs 30 lakh to Rs 1.2 crore depending on degree of disability, age and risk factors.

Apart from the five-member expert panel, the Union Health Ministry has asked states and union territories to constitute separate committees so that they can receive such complaints from affected patients.

Also Read: First: Health Ministry Panel wants JnJ to pay at least Rs 20 lakh to patients for faulty implants

The expert committee findings say that over 3,600 patients with the faulty implants remain untraceable and that at least four deaths have been reported from those who underwent surgeries using these devices.

Also Read: JnJ Faulty Hip Implants: Another Expert panel formed to determine compensation to patients

The five-member state panel, since its formation in October 2018, received nearly 40 applications. The panel, headed by an assistant commissioner from FDA, includes a radiologist, two orthopaedic surgeons from JJ Hospital and deputy drugs controller (western region).
“From the first lot of applications, we shortlisted two cases and referred them to Delhi. Now we have found seven more patients fit for compensation,” a senior Food & Drug Administration (FDA) official told TOI.
Around 4,700 surgeries were carried out involving DePuy implants though the company has claimed in the past that only 2,300 patients could be tracked. State panel members were of the opinion that many patients continue to be in the dark about compensation or even that they are fitted with the implant. That probably explains why most applications are not from the affected. “Out of the 40-odd applications, only a dozen will be from genuine patients, who have a DePuy hip implant,” said a member.
“Rest there are cases of any implant surgery. Some have not even undergone hip surgery. Interestingly, we have also got well-rounded applications from doctors, claiming their patients have the DePuy ASR implant,” the member added.
Some patients, at the forefront of the fight against J&J, are yet to come in front of the state panel. “We don’t agree with the compensation formula, so why should we present our files?” said one of the patients.
The company has been non-committal on compensation payments. The first patient is yet to receive the amount. A J&J spokesperson said the matter was sub judice, reports TOI.

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Source: with inputs
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