October 8, 2008
Pest-exterminating giant Orkin has pledged to repair a termite-ravaged condominium complex in Sumter County as part of a legal settlement that could cost the company an estimated $6 million in fix-up costs.
The company did not accept responsibility for pest damage at the Sandalwood Condominium Association at Wildwood, a 104-unit residential community near the intersection of State Road 44 and County Road 468.
But Peter M. Cardillo, known as the “bug lawyer” because his Tampa-based practice specializes in termite cases, said the company failed to properly treat Sandalwood’s 13 residential buildings and clubhouse, rid the complex of the wood-eating pests or live up to other promises and guarantees in its contract.
Orkin spokeswoman Martha Craft acknowledged the resolution of the lawsuit but would not comment further “until everything has been formalized.”
The civil trial was set to begin next month and last three weeks.
Read Article Orlando Sentinel
Manufacturers of pediatric cough and cold medicines announced Tuesday that they would voluntarily change their products’ labels to say that they should not be used in children under age 4.
In addition, products with certain antihistamines will get new language warning parents not to use them to sedate or make a child sleepy. While many parents believe that getting a sick child to sleep is the best medicine, the use of sedatives is widely discouraged by medical experts, who say they can worsen breathing problems caused by illness.
“We’re trying to prevent as many medication errors as we can, and we think this is the right direction,” said Linda A. Suydam, president of the Consumer Healthcare Products Association, a trade organization that represents the makers of over-the-counter medicines.
Read Article New York Times
Eli Lilly has agreed to pay $62 million to 33 states to settle claims that it improperly marketed Zyprexa, its top-selling drug, to patients who did not have schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, its only approved uses.
The settlement, to be announced Tuesday, ends an 18-month investigation led by the offices of the attorneys general of Illinois and Oregon, which contended that Lilly had violated consumer protection laws by urging doctors to prescribe Zyprexa to patients who did not need it.
It is the largest settlement paid by a drug company in a state consumer protection case, topping the $58 million that Merck paid to settle similar allegations about Vioxx, lawyers for the states said.
The agreement may also be a sign that a much larger deal is near in a separate but related civil and criminal investigation led by federal prosecutors in Philadelphia. In that case, Lilly is expected to pay more than $1 billion in fines and restitution to states and the federal government and may also plead guilty to a misdemeanor criminal charge related to off-label marketing of Zyprexa.
Read Article New York Times
A new study suggests that free drug samples, an effective marketing tool for the drug industry, do little to help the poor and may put children’s health at risk.
The study, being published Monday in the journal Pediatrics, analyzed an in-depth survey conducted in 2004 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that asked people how they got health care. As part of the survey, respondents were asked if they received free drug samples. It was found that children in the lowest income group were no more likely to receive the samples than were those in the highest income group, in part because the poor are less likely to see doctors.
Once in a doctor’s office, children who lack health insurance are more likely to receive free drug samples than their well-insured counterparts, the study reported.
Read Article New york Times
The New Times has had periodic disputes with County Attorney, Andrew Thomas, in recent years. A federal judge dismissed the New Times’ suit and felt there was not a 1st Amendment violation. EV Tribune has the story:
“New Times’ suit against county attorney tossed”
A federal judge on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit filed against the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office by executives of the New Times newspaper.
The suit accused County Attorney Andrew Thomas and his office of negligence, conspiracy and racketeering, and violating the constitutional rights of two journalists by arresting them for publishing details of a grand jury subpoena.
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