A federal jury in Denver ruled against dialysis provider DaVita and awarded a $383.5 million settlement in three wrongful death lawsuits. The victims suffered cardiac arrest and died after treatment with GranuFlo, which DaVita knew could cause toxic levels of pH imbalances and alkalosis. This remarkable number includes $125 million to each family in punitive damages with additional compensatory damage ranging between $1.5 and $5 million.
Issue goes back to 2012
The U.S. Drug Administration issued a Class 1 recall of GranuFlo in 2012. At the time, multiple wrongful death suits alleged negligence and fraud, claiming that the dialysis provider did not review or inspect its product. If DaVita had, the company would have noticed the dangerous change in patients’ blood after dialysis. It was determined that DaVita should have been aware of the complications and loss of life of patients using GranuFlo.
Complications from using the treatment include:
- Electrolyte imbalance
- Loss of consciousness
- Trouble breathing
It believed then that the Fortune 500 company ignored the many red flags, which led to the subsequent death of the three victims as well as others. There are nearly 3,200 lawsuits currently pending in a Massachusetts federal court.
DaVita will appeal
According to the Denver Post, the company released a written statement saying it plans to appeal the decision. It added that the FDA approved the product more than 25 years ago. It also points out that it has plenty of research that the product is safe to the 200,000 patients who use the service at its 2,500 outpatient dialysis centers.
An attorney with medical malpractice and personal injury experience can help ensure that the best interests of the patient and their family are protected, particularly when there are irregularities in the treatment or results.