Medical devices have changed the landscape of healthcare forever. These devices have created new treatment options for people suffering from a wide range of illnesses and are designed to save lives. At the end of the day, medical devices are products, and all products can fail.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has substantial control over the approval and sale of medical devices. However, once they go on the market, it is up to the corporations to guarantee the safety of these products. Just like any other product, medical devices can be recalled.
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The responsibility for properly informing the public about a recall falls on the corporations. Far too often medical device manufacturers fail to meet the obligation of properly informing doctors and patients of the risk of medical devices. Why? What is the incentive of these device makers not to learn about the risk of their products? The answer is, more often than not, dollars and cents. Every warning leads a doctor or patient to hesitate to use or proscribe the device.Medical Devices Are Rushed on the Market
Defective medical devices are usually a result of the corporations rushing the product to market without sufficient testing. Sure, the FDA has oversight over the testing process and has lots of regulations in place. But they have to enforce those regulations and hold these companies’ feet to the fire when it comes to patient safety. But there is a stunning – stunning – revolving door between industry and the FDA. If you are an FDA employee looking to cash out your experience with the drug and medical device companies one day, just how tough are you going to be on them? That question answers itself, right?
Even assuming a dedicated FDA, the government can only do so much. In the end, the responsibility for ensuring the safety of medical device is placed in the hands of the company… the same one standing to profit from the maximum amount of devices being sold.What Are Medical Devices?
A medical device is an instrument or machine that is used to diagnose or treat a patient’s medical condition. Examples of medical devices include joint replacements, pacemakers, trans-vaginal mesh, and even breast implants. These devices all have one thing in common: they have to be placed inside the patient. This usually requires surgery. When something goes wrong with a medical device, a person’s health can be placed in jeopardy. Not to forget, problems with medical devices crop up over time, meaning someone could experience symptoms for an extended period before discovering the faultiness of a medical device.Liability of Device Makers
Since medical devices are products, users are both patients and consumers. And the legal system provides protection for consumers of various products. In some instances, companies can be held accountable for their products through “strict liability.” Under strict liability, companies are automatically responsible for the products they place on the market. There is no need for a plaintiff to demonstrate that the company was actually negligent; all they must show is that the company placed the product on the market, and it caused harm to the consumer.
Strict liability is not always the case, however. More often than not winning a medical device claim involves more than just showing that a company put a defective product on the market. That means, to win, a plaintiff needs a law firm that has the resources and skill to aggressively pursue their claim. Medical device lawsuits often involve a single consumer going up against a huge pharmaceutical corporation. This requires skill, knowledge, and resources to win.
Corporations often blame you, the consumer, for injuries sustained from medical devices. It is common for the corporations to argue that you used the device incorrectly, or somehow brought injury upon yourself. They are hurting and killing people and then insulting them.
The process of fighting back is a battle. Proving the facts is often complicated, requiring “expert witnesses.” Of course, you have to prove the manufacturer is at fault for not warning about the risks associated with the product, or in making a safe device. You must also show that the medical device caused your injury. This is referred to as “causation,” which essentially asks “did the harm cause your injuries?” This is more of the blame game, and you need to marshal the resources to defeat these defenses.Getting a Lawyer for Your Claim
If either you or a family member has suffered an injury, or worse, by the hands of a faulty medical device, you deserve to be compensated. Call 800-553-8082 or get a free online consultation.