Bayer’s YAZ woes continue (see prior posts here, and website here) with the advent of lawsuits just filed by pension funds for firefighters and Philadelphia city employees in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia). The complaints, filed by Philadelphia Firefighters Union Local No. 22 Health and Welfare Fund and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, District Council 47 Health and Welfare Fund, alleges, like the product liability cases consolidated in an MDL, that Bayer unlawfully promoted the birth control pill and concealed the increased risks of side effects—including blood clots (which cause strokes, heart attacks, pulmonary embolism deep vein thrombosis) and gallbladder disease.
Lawsuits like this, by governmental agencies, health care plans, insurance companies and the like, do not get much play in the press. To the extent that they do, they are misunderstood. Lawyers who practice civil work, especially in the product liability field, should take advantage of this to further prove that they are doing good work. No one is going to be calling the Philadelphia funds “ambulance chasers” or “trial lawyers” in the derogatory sense of the words. Instead, they are working to help their members (or, as in other cases, taxpayers). Just like plaintiffs’ lawyers.