Week Ahead in Health: June 28, 2021 – Reuters
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(Reuters) – Here are some upcoming events of interest to the health community. Unless otherwise noted, all times are local, and court appearances are virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Monday, June 28
9 a.m. – A trial is scheduled in consolidated lawsuits filed by New York Attorney General Letitia James and two counties in the state against opioid manufacturers, distributors and pharmacies. Defendants in the trial include Johnson & Johnson, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, AbbVie unit Allergan Finance LLC and others. The trial will be held in person at Touro Law School in Central Islip, New York to accommodate COVID-19 social distancing measures. The case is one of several over opioids to go to trial this year, with other trials underway in California and West Virginia.
The case is In re Opioid Litigation, New York Supreme Court, Suffolk County, No. 400000/2017. For the counties: Jane Conroy of Simmons Hanly Conroy and Paul Napoli of Napoli Shkolnik. For New York: David Nachman of the New York Office of Attorney General. For Johnson & Johnson: Charles Lifland of O’Melveny & Myers and Vincent Messina of Sinnreich Kosakoff & Messina. For Teva: Martha Leibell of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius. For Allergan: Jennifer Levy of Kirkland & Ellis.
9 a.m. – Drugmakers Johnson & Johnson, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Allergan PLC and Endo International will begin presenting their defense case in a non-jury trial before Orange County Superior Court Judge Peter Wilson over their alleged role in the opioid epidemic, which began in April. The plaintiffs, a group of counties including Los Angeles and Santa Clara, wrapped up their case earlier in June.
The case is People of the State of California v. Purdue Pharma, L.P., Orange County Superior Court, Case No. CGC-13-534108. For plaintiffs: Linda Singer of Motley Rice. For J&J: Mike Yoder of O’Melveny & Myers. For Teva: Collie James of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius. For Allergan: Donna Welch of Kirkland & Ellis. For Endo: John Hueston of Hueston Hennigan.
Wednesday, June 30
9 a.m. – An in-person hearing is scheduled before U.S. District Judge Edward Davila in San Jose on Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes’ motion to prevent a clinical pathologist from testifying for the government at her upcoming fraud trial that her companies’ blood tests were not accurate or reliable. Holmes is accused of defrauding patients and investors by falsely claiming to have developed technology to run dozens of tests on a single drop of blood.
The case is U.S. v. Holmes, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, No. 18-cr-00258. For the government: Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeff Schenk. For Holmes: Lance Wade and Kevin Downey of Williams & Connolly.
10:30 a.m. – A Pennsylvania doctor is expected to plead guilty before U.S. District Judge William Stickman in Pittsburgh to federal charges of accepting kickbacks from defunct drugmaker Insys Therapeutics in exchange for promoting its fentanyl spray Subsys. The defendant, Thomas Whitten, is one of several doctors around the country to be charged in connection with the company, along with some of its top executives.
The case is USA v. Whitten, U.S. District Court, Western District of Pennsylvania, No. 20-cr-00018. For the government: Assistant U.S. Attorney Cindy Chung. For Whitten: Patrick Thomassey of Thomassey Miller DeRiso.
Thursday, July 1
1:30 p.m. – A case management conference is scheduled before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley in San Francisco in litigation over the failure of a cryogenic tank at Pacific Fertility Center, a San Francisco fertility clinic. Hundreds of people have sued manufacturer Chart Industries over the March 2018 tank failure, which resulted in the destruction of thousands of eggs and embryos, and are separately pursuing arbitration against the clinic. The first trial ended earlier this month with a jury finding Chart 90% liable for the failure awarding a total of $15 million to five plaintiffs, and further trials are scheduled later this year.
The case is In re Pacific Fertility Center Litigation, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, No. 18-cv-01586. For the plaintiffs: Dena Sharp of Girard Sharp, Adam Wolf of Peiffer Wolf Carr Kane & Conway, Amy Zeman of Gibbs Law Group and others. For Chart: John Duffy of Swanson, Martin & Bell.
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