Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Merck: Vioxx trouble brewing in China


Merck has a worldwide problem on its hands, if they didn't know that already:

A Beijing-based law firm will file a collective lawsuit against US pharmaceutical company Merck & Co Inc next year, and is looking for Chinese users of the pain relief drug Vioxx who have suffered from side effects.

Attorney Hao Junbo from Beijing Limin Lawyer's Office said he thought China has a large number of Vioxx users, Beijing Youth Daily reported yesterday.

Hao said his firm is seeking Chinese patients to show their prescription and medical records when using Vioxx, in a bid to prepare for compensation claims in the United States.

Beijing Youth Daily quoted Hao as saying that there are more than 4,200 civil cases in the US filed against the New Jersey-based company, and an American lawyer helped a Texas widow win a US$253 million verdict in the first Vioxx trial, held on August 19 this year.

"The winning is quite conducive to future court rulings," he said, adding that his firm would be acting on a no-win no-fee basis.