p>Bayer, the makers of the controversial birth control pills Yaz, Yasmin and the generic Ocella, has confirmed reports that it will continue to negotiate settlements with the more than 10,000 plaintiffs who have sued the company over the side effects linked to the pills.
The drug giant already has settled thousands of lawsuits over blood clots and gallbladder disease, but more settlements are expected in the future. While the company has slowly ceded to potential dangers linked to Yaz and other drospirenone-based pills, Bayer steadfastly maintains that the fourth generation oral contraceptives are no more dangerous than older drugs that don’t contain drospirenone, a synthetic progestin. Early reports that have been given by court officers have estimated that the settlement of Yaz lawsuits may come to an end in summer of 2013, and the amounts of the settlements don’t come close to proper compensation.
An example is the series of settlements Bayer reached last year when the company agreed to settle more than 1,400 Yaz lawsuits to the tune of $750 million over blood clots and related injuries including deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolisms. While at first that amount appears large, it adds up to an estimated $200,000 per plaintiff. That amount is nothing compared to the significant damage blood clots can cause, even leading to strokes and death.
But however low that amount seems to be, another recent settlement agreement amounts to much less.
Recently Bayer agreed to pay out a cap of $24 million in compensation to women who have suffered from gallbladder complications. Again, the payout sounds large, but it only adds up to $2,000 per plaintiff who had gallbladder complications and only $3,000 to those who had to have corrective surgery. As plaintiffs scramble to receive compensation, Bayer appears to be agreeing to the least amount possible. The lawsuits all accuse Bayer of failing to properly warn the public and healthcare professionals of Yaz’s links to blood clots and gallbladder disease. Other complications proven to be linked to Yaz and drospirenone include kidney stones, heart attacks and irritable bowel syndrome.