BAYER pays compensation for people infected with HIV

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The pharmaceutical company Bayer pays compensation for HIV-infected bleeders

In a settlement, the pharmaceutical company Bayer agreed to pay several million euros in compensation for people suffering from the blood disorder and who were infected with HIV or hepatitis C by Bayer's “plasma derivative therapies”.

Together with three other accused pharmaceutical companies, Bayer AG will pay a double-digit million amount to people with the blood disorder who have been infected with HIV or hepatitis C through “plasma derivative therapy”. In addition to Bayer, the companies Baxter, Behring-Aventis and Alpha are also affected. The accused companies had already decided to settle in 2009 with an American law firm that represents a large number of plaintiffs, but this had yet to be approved and accepted by the majority of plaintiffs. The fact that no facts about the offered payments have been made known to date is due to the fact that the parties concerned and their lawyers were also obliged not to disclose the comparison.

Comparison with HIV-infected hemophiliacs more than 50 million euros According to the organization "Coordination against BAYER threats, CBG", the defendant pharmaceutical companies are willing to pay more than 50 million dollars to HIV-infected hemophiliacs from 22 countries who distinguish themselves through blood plasma products of the companies mentioned have been infected with the disease. This is tantamount to admitting a debt, the CBG assessed the comparison that has now become known. In several countries - including the United States - there were numerous lawsuits against Bayer and the other pharmaceutical companies "aimed at compensation for plaintiffs living outside the United States," according to the statement in Bayer AG's last 2010 letter to shareholders. The plaintiffs accused the corporations of using contaminated blood samples between 1978 and 1985 in the course of the “plasma derivative therapies” offered, as a result of which those affected had become infected with HIV or the hepatitis C virus. The blood plasma products used were contaminated, according to the plaintiffs. Bayer had already paid around 300 million euros in 1997 to a compensation fund for bleeders suffering from AIDS after a blood transfusion.

Majority of clients had to accept the settlement No one was able to admit a direct debt on the part of the pharmaceutical companies - in view of the impending payment of damages. For them, the comparison that has now become known was the cleanest solution. However, "some conditions had to be met before the agreement could enter into force," according to the Bayer Group's letter to shareholders. This means that the majority of the clients represented by the law firm also had to accept the comparison, which, according to the group, has now taken place. 90 percent of the plaintiffs had agreed to the settlement so that it could enter into force. HIV-infected hemophiliacs in Germany will not benefit from this, however. They already receive a monthly pension and were not allowed to take part in the class action lawsuit, the CBG said. However, according to the CBG, some German hemophiliacs who suffer from jaundice are considered in the comparison.

CBG: Corporations blackmail victims into silence Overall, the comparison certainly makes life a little easier for the affected hemophiliacs, but they cannot cure the money. And even if the accused pharmaceutical companies admit their guilt almost indirectly through the comparison, the parallel confidentiality obligation is more than questionable according to the CBG. Philipp Mimkes from the board of the CBG said: "It is outrageous that the responsible companies are blackmailing the victims!" This type of secrecy policy casts a dubious picture of the actually positive willingness of companies to compensate. In addition, the comparison is tantamount to a “factual admission of guilt” by the defendant companies.

Bloodblowers knowingly supplied with contaminated blood plasma For the CBG, the comparison of the scandal of contaminated blood plasma products is by no means complete. The organization is demanding criminal investigations against those responsible at the defendant companies. "As the main culprit of the scandal surrounding HIV-contaminated blood products, BAYER must not shirk responsibility," emphasized Philipp Mimkes. Given the procedures at the time, it is easy to understand that the corporations prefer not to talk about their scandalous behavior anymore and also to prohibit those affected. For example, according to the CBG, the subsidiary of the Bayer Group, the company Cutter, in the mid-eighties as the global market leader for coagulants, did not use existing inactivation methods for cost reasons, even though the company was aware of the risk of infection for bleeders. Even after untreated blood products were banned in the U.S. and Europe, Cutter still exported leftover lots to Latin America and Asia. According to the CBG, this knowingly infecting thousands of bleeders with HIV was one of the darkest chapters in the history of the Bayer Group. The fact that the further clarification is now prevented by the obligation to maintain confidentiality in comparison is outrageous according to the CBG and shows only too well the true face of the companies that otherwise like to present themselves as sustainable, environmentally and socially friendly. (fp)

Also read:
Duogynon lawsuit: files remain closed?
Scandal about a fake study at the hospital

Image: Bayer company logo

Author and source information

Video: A Death Sentence: The Contaminated Blood Scandal. HuffPost Reports: UK


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