Depuy ASR Settlement Update
Over the past several months Johnson and Johnson and its subsidiary company DePuy Orthopedics have been grappling with how to put to rest some 12,000 to 14,000 lawsuits which have been filed by patients who have had the metal on metal DePuy ASR hip implant inserted into their bodies to replace their own injured hips. Today undisclosed sources advised the New York Times that the pharmaceutical giant had agreed to pay up to $4 Billion dollars to settle only those cases in which there has been an actual revision surgery, that is where the ASR device had to be taken out and a new implant inserted due to patient complications with the ASR hip.
Bill Kershaw who represents hundreds of patients who have received metal on metal hip implants observed that the Times article was not an official announcement and that folks should be careful in relying upon the information in the article. If the information contained in the article is true, it would still leave out in the cold many thousands of plaintiffs who have an ASR hip and high metal levels but who have not had revision surgery either because their medical conditions prevent it or because their doctors have not yet deemed it medically necessary to perform a revision surgery but will likely do so in the next couple years. Kershaw believes any settlement will have to have a mechanism to deal with such cases as well as a mechanism to deal with catastrophic injury cases which probably constitute 10% to 15% of the cases. Kershaw does not believe that $350,000 (the average amount identified for each plaintiff in the Times article) will be adequate compensation for many of the seriously injured.
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