Teva walloped $163M in hepC ruling, doc 'unfit' for trial

The other shoe has dropped for Teva ($TEVA) and supply chain partners Baxter ($BAX) and McKesson ($MCK) in the case of a hepatitis C outbreak that followed reuse of jumbo-sized vials of propofol at a colonoscopy center. The jury assessed $162.5 million in punitive damages on top of the $20.1 million in compensatory damages it awarded last week to three victims, reports Bloomberg.

Meanwhile, the owner of the Las Vegas colonoscopy center where the procedures took place is unfit to stand trial, his lawyers say, according to the Miami Herald. Gastroenterologist Dipak Desai and two anesthetists from the Desert Shadow Endoscopy Center are accused of infecting 7 patients by reusing endoscopy scopes and jumbo-sized propofol vials--intended for longer-term sedation that that required for a colonoscopy--during outpatient procedures, says the Washington Post.

Last May, in a related case, jurors awarded a victim and his wife $5.1 million in compensatory damages and assessed $500 million in punitive damages against Teva and Baxter.

Teva says it will appeal both the punitive and compensatory damages awards.

Nearly 300 lawsuits stemming from the hepatitis C outbreak are still in the offing.  

- here's the Bloomberg story
- see the Miami Herald coverage
- here's more from the Washington Post

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