How Johnson & Johnson Covered Up Their Faulty Hip Implants
The Indian wing of Johnson & Johnson, the multinational pharmaceutical company, has been found to have hidden key facts about its faulty hip implants form the national regulatory body. It also “suppressed” facts about their adverse health impact, reported The Indian Express.
The conglomerate did not inform the national regulator about the number of surgeries conducted, the harmful health impacts of the surgery and the number of such corrective surgeries performed on the patients, according to the Express report.
The information was put together by a Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare report, submitted in February 2018. It further states that more than 3,600 patients with the faulty implants can’t be traced while at least four deaths have been confirmed.
Along with these, discrepancies were also found in data provided by J&J over a period of three years (2014-2017) to Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) of India. Of the 121 faulty cases reported by J&J, reports of only 48 are available with CDSCO.
The company further concealed the fact that the occurrence of the revision surgery was as high as 35 percent, as opposed to the 12 percent figure provided by them, reports Express.
…as per 2014 data, the cases of revision surgery were very high almost 35%. However, as per the latest data, the rate comes out to be 25%. Even assuming it to be the correct figure, the data is very startling on the number of patients who had undergone revision surgery, let alone their pain and sufferings. The committee noted that this data is only for the patients who had contacted the registry of the firm and it does not count those patients on whom the implant was inserted.The Health Ministry Report
In addition to this, J&J has provided no compensation to the patients who suffered due to the faulty implants. This is in contrast with the $2.47 billion compensation that was paid to the patients in the US. However, the company equated “reimbursement with compensation”, the report further pointed out.
The expert committee’s report suggests a compensation of Rs 20 lakhs. However, in a letter that the affected patients have sent to Health Minister JP Nadda, they said that amount does nothing but “add insult to injury”.
Health Impacts of a Faulty Transplant
As pointed out by the Health Ministry report, the implants lead to higher levels of cobalt and chromium in the blood stream. This in turn leads to toxicity in the body, tissue damage and adverse effects on the body organs. Not only can all of this lead to several health problems, it also leads to an increase in pain and a decrease in mobility of the patient.
(With inputs from The Indian Express.)
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