Last fall the company agreed to pay almost $1.3 billion, in addition to $54.4 million already paid, to resolve AMS TVM lawsuits. Ethicon, however, is still holding out on its claims. Perhaps because it has the largest number of lawsuits filed over its transvaginal mesh products, now exceeding 23,000 claims. Or perhaps it hopes that plaintiffs with transvaginal mesh complaints will get worn down and go away. Unfortunately, TVM complications don’t usually go away.
Last month Endo reported to U.S. District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin, the West Virginia federal judge overseeing the AMS multidistrict litigation, that it had reached settlements with about 350 plaintiffs. The multidistrict litigation is In re: American Medical Systems Inc. Pelvic Repair System Products Liability Litigation, case number 2:12-md-02325, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia. Endo told Judge Goodwin that it had “compromised and settled all claims” in about 360 cases in 12 joint motions to dismiss; about 30 of those cases asserted claims against other companies, including Boston Scientific Corp. and C.R. Bard Inc., according to Law360.
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While Endo has said most claims have been settled, it estimates that “all known, pending and estimated future claims primarily related to vaginal mesh products” will total about $1.6 billion. Payments under all settlements will be paid through 2017.
Meanwhile, Judge Goodwin issued a pretrial order on April 2, ordering another joint conference status meeting on June 2. The meeting is set up to find some way of resolving the majority of transvaginal complaints with manufacturers including AMS and Ethicon as well as Boston Scientific, Bard Avaulta, Coloplast, Cook and Neomedic. Perhaps Judge Goodwin will use AMS as an example for other companies to do the right thing…