Category Archives: Labeling

New FDA Labeling Changes to Require “Black Box Warning” on Immediate Release Opioid Pain Medications

In an effort to combat what it calls “epidemic levels of opioid addiction and overdose”, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that it will require class-wide safety labeling changes for immediate release opioid pain medications, including a new “black box warning” informing patients and prescribers of the serious risks of misuse, abuse, addiction, overdose and death. In addition, the FDA will also require several safety labeling changes across all prescription opioid products to include additional warnings addressing the risks of opioids. Opioid analgesics,…

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California Court of Appeals Rules Plaintiffs Can Pursue Claims Against Novartis for Alleged Damages Arising From Ingestion of Generic Drug Six Years After Novartis Divested its Interest

On March 9, 2016, the California Court of Appeals ruled that the plaintiffs’ claims of failure to warn and misrepresentation against Novartis were legally viable. The critical dispute raised by Novartis was that it did not manufacture the prescription medication that allegedly harmed the plaintiffs. In T. H. v. Novartis Pharms. Corp., No. D067839, 2016 Cal. App. LEXIS 179 (Ct. App. Mar. 9, 2016), two minor plaintiffs alleged that Novartis was liable for neurological injuries they sustained in utero after their mother was prescribed,…

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Plaintiffs’ Product Case Trumped by the Learned Intermediary Doctrine

A large pharmaceutical manufacturer recently won a fundamentally important victory both within the mass tort it is facing and for all life science companies needing to rely upon the learned intermediary doctrine. In the consolidated litigation proceeding in New Jersey state court, the plaintiffs’ claim the manufacturer failed to properly warn its users of known gastro-intestinal complications associated with the drug. Relying on the learned intermediary doctrine, the judge granted the manufacturer summary judgment in some cases because the treating physicians testified they prescribed the…

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First Circuit Affirms Preemption of State-Law Claim for Consumer Fraud

labelIn a key preemption ruling late last month, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a putative class action. The First Circuit affirmed dismissal where the plaintiffs alleged consumer fraud, holding that state-law claims for false or misleading labeling are preempted by federal law. Read the full decision here. The First Circuit’s ruling built upon recent United States Supreme Court decisions holding that state-law claims aimed at generic drug labeling are preempted by applying this important defense to…

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Will Supreme Court End Split Over Whether Generic Drug Companies Can Face “Failure to Timely Update” Claims?

The U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) has (again) been asked to determine the question of whether claims can be made against generic drug manufacturers for failing to timely update and/or disseminate their labels following U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approvals. Essentially, the issue is whether the time taken by a generic company to effect a labeling change can be tortious and subject to a private cause of action.  A Law360 article with the Petition for Writ of Certiorari in Pliva Inc., v. Huck can be…

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Pennsylvania Supreme Court Holds Plaintiffs May Assert Negligent Design Claims Against Drug Companies

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court in Lance v. Wyeth (2014 Pa.LEXIS 205) recently ruled that pharmaceutical companies can be held liable for negligent design, testing, marketing, and distribution of drugs regulated by the FDA. This decision alters the landscape of Pennsylvania law because pharmaceutical companies previously succeeded in having similar claims dismissed based upon the learned intermediary doctrine. Under this doctrine, the manufacturer of prescription medications discharges its duty to warn users of the risks associated with its products by warning the prescribing physician of…

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FDA Rule Proposal Could Lead to Liability for Generic Drug Manufacturers

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is proposing new rule changes that would permit generic drug manufacturers to amend drug warning labels when they receive new information related to drug safety; irrespective of whether the revised labeling differs from the brand name manufacturer. The proposed rules further provide that the generic manufacturer would be required to submit the labeling changes along with the data supporting the change to the FDA, which would review the request and post the data in a public web page.…

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First New York Court Rejects Controversial Drug Developer Liability Rule

In a controversial 2008 decision in Conte v. Wyeth, Inc., 168 Cal. App. 4th 89 (Cal. Ct. App. 2008), a California Court of Appeals held defendant drug developer, Wyeth, Inc., liable for inadequate warnings in connection with the plaintiff’s use of a competitor’s generic version of the gastrointestinal reflux drug Reglan. The court in Conte held “the common law duty to use due care owed by a name-brand prescription drug manufacturer when providing product warnings extends not only to consumers of its own product,…

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Dietary Supplement Company Slammed By FDA For Failure To Comply With CGMP

Brower Enterprises was recently hit with a warning letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that excoriates them for violating Current Good Manufacturing Practices (CGMPs). The violation of CGMPs caused a number of Brower’s products to be adulterated within the meaning of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (the Act). Examples of violations of CGMPs included keeping written procedures for quality control operations, holding and distributing operations, returned dietary supplements, and product complaints. Additionally, Brower failed to comply with CGMPs because it…

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FDA to Consider Permitting Dosage Information on OTC Children’s Fever/Pain Remedy Products

The Consumer Healthcare Products Association (“CHPA”) has petitioned the FDA to allow dosing information to be provided on fever/pain relief drug labels. The CHPA is a trade group representing OTC manufacturers of acetaminophen products. Any parent with young children knows that OTC fever/pain relief products currently do not contain dosing information for children under two years of age. Although parents may have obtained the proper dosing instructions from their child’s pediatrician, recalling and/or finding that information (especially in the middle of the night) can be…

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