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All news posts from June 01, 2002 to June 30, 2002

Posted by Staff Writer
June 28, 2002 12:00 AM

WorldCom's plan to layoff 17,000 employees commenced today only hours after a judge issued a restraining order directing company officers as well as Arthur Anderson officials not to destroy information pertaining to the recent fraud allegations. The documents were delivered to WorldCom's headquarters in Clinton, Missi

Posted by Staff Writer
June 28, 2002 12:00 AM

According to a new report in this month's issue of the British Journal of Psychiatry, researchers have linked Mellaril, also known as Thioridazine Hydrochloride, to several unexplained deaths in England. Dr. Simon H. L. Thomas and colleagues from the University of Newcastle studied several cases of unexplained death a

Posted by Staff Writer
June 28, 2002 12:00 AM

A New York jury awarded $10 million Wednesday to the family of a 14-year-old boy who died during a school field trip to a water park in Pennsylvania. Daniel Maracallo drowned in the wave pool at Allentown's Dorney Park and Wildwater Kingdom. Park security guards found the teenager in the attraction hours after fellow

Posted by Staff Writer
June 27, 2002 12:00 AM

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP have added a boxed warning and strengthened the WARNINGS section of the label for Tamoxifen Citrate, sold under the brand name Nolvadex. The warning informs healthcare professionals about new risk information of particular relevance to wome

Posted by Staff Writer
June 27, 2002 12:00 AM

Three public interest groups filed a lawsuit against the Department of Transportation (DOT) yesterday over the inadequacies of a new tire pressure checking system. In the wake of the Firestone Tire recall, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a rule requiring all vehicles built after Novem

Posted by Staff Writer
June 26, 2002 12:00 AM

In an announcement that rekindled memories of the recent Enron scandal, WorldCom, the nation's No. 2 long-distance carrier, revealed Tuesday it had overstated its earnings by nearly $4 billion. According to the company, more than $3 billion of expenses in 2001 and $797 million this year were wrongly listed as capital

Posted by Staff Writer
June 26, 2002 12:00 AM

A Federal jury recently awarded $225,000 to a Florida man who received a defective prosthetic knee device. Joel Tuitt suffered from degenerative arthritis in his left knee, the results of a slip-and-fall accident in 1996. To help prevent further injury, doctors decided in February 1999 to install a Duracon unicompart

Posted by Staff Writer
June 25, 2002 12:00 AM

One of the nation's leading integrated services corporations, UNICCO, has settled a $1 million lawsuit filed by seven female employees who alleged they were sexually harassed during their tenure with the company. The women, all young immigrants, will split $500,000, with the remaining money to be reserved for future l

Posted by Staff Writer
June 25, 2002 12:00 AM

In the wake of recent warnings concerning the safety of alternative supplements such as Kava Kava and Ephedra, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced it will establish a traditional and alternative drug reaction monitoring system within four years. A spokesperson for the WHO said the global system, which will n

Posted by Staff Writer
June 25, 2002 12:00 AM

The city of Modesto, California agreed last week to pay $2.55 million to the family of an 11-year-old boy who was accidentally killed by authorities during a drug raid. Alberto Sepulveda was shot by a member of the Modesto Police Department's elite SWAT Team in September 2000 when the officer's shotgun accidentally di

Posted by Staff Writer
June 24, 2002 12:00 AM

A new report published in this month's issue of Archives of Internal Medicine reveals that a class of cholesterol reducing medications known as statins may prevent heart problems in older patients. According to the article, researchers followed nearly 6,000 men and women 65 years and older from 1989 until June 1997.

Posted by Staff Writer
June 24, 2002 12:00 AM

A landmark third-party personal injury lawsuit ended last week when the Oregon Supreme Court refused to review the case of a physician who sued a pharmaceutical company for failing to properly warn about a drug's contraindications. Dr. Frederick Edwards filed suit against Key Pharmaceuticals Inc., a division of Scheri

Posted by Staff Writer
June 21, 2002 12:00 AM

In a judgment aimed at protecting millions of Americans who are insured by health maintenance organizations (HMOs), the Supreme Court ruled Thursday that patients denied coverage by their managed care provider can seek second opinions and enlist independent review boards to assess HMO decisions. The case, Rush Prudent

Posted by Staff Writer
June 21, 2002 12:00 AM

Germany's Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices announced this week that it has revoked the licenses of all medications sold in the country that contain the herbal supplement kava kava. Concerns over the substance's safety have grown in recent months after health officials from several countries linked kava

Posted by Staff Writer
June 21, 2002 12:00 AM

The families of three South Carolina teenagers who drowned after their sailboat slammed into several Charleston Harbor jetties were recently awarded $21 million. The accident, which occurred in December 1997, killed Michael Cornett, 49, his two sons, Michael Paul, 16, and Daniel, 13 and their 14-year-old cousin, Bobby

Posted by Staff Writer
June 20, 2002 12:00 AM

The U.S. attorney's office in Newark, New Jersey has taken over a criminal investigation of quality control problems at Schering-Plough Corporation's Puerto Rico manufacturing plant. Officials with a branch of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the territory were previously heading the investigation. A re

Posted by Staff Writer
June 20, 2002 12:00 AM

A former employee at a Pennsylvania McDonald's has filed suit against the corporation alleging that his two former restaurant managers sexually harassed him. Robert Weyant claims Jodi Fisher and Pamela Allhouse made comments about his sexual lifestyle and physically harassed him on several occasions during his employm

Posted by Staff Writer
June 20, 2002 12:00 AM

A new study conducted by scientists with the International Agency for Research on Cancer, a division of the World Health Organization, reveals that tobacco products may be linked to several more types of cancer than already identified. The project analyzed over 3,000 tobacco smoke studies involving millions of people.

Posted by Staff Writer
June 19, 2002 12:00 AM

The family of a California woman who was shot to death by her estranged husband has settled a lawsuit that alleged the Sonoma County Sheriff's Department failed to properly enforce a restraining order against him. Maria Macias, 36, was fatally shot and her mother, Sara Hernandez, was wounded in the April 1996 attack.

Posted by Staff Writer
June 19, 2002 12:00 AM

Purdue Pharma announced this week that an abuse-resistant form of its controversial pain reliever OxyContin would not be available next year as planned. The announcement was a major disappointment for the drug manufacturer, which has been taking criticism from health officials and activists who want the drug banned.

Posted by Staff Writer
June 19, 2002 12:00 AM

For the second time in two weeks a Miami jury has ruled against Big Tobacco, this time awarding $5.5 million to a former flight attendant who alleged years of secondhand smoke exposure led to her chronic sinusitis. Lynn French, 56, said she inhaled toxic secondhand smoke for the first 14 years of her 26-year career wh

Posted by Staff Writer
June 18, 2002 12:00 AM

A jury recently awarded $30.1 million to a sanitation worker who suffered severe injuries when his truck was struck by a Union Pacific Railroad train. In January 1998, Charles Rolf was crossing Union Pacific railroad tracks on a county road outside of Goodwin, Arkansas when a train hit the back of his garbage truck.

Posted by Staff Writer
June 17, 2002 12:00 AM

In a major setback for physicians and public interest groups desperately seeking the ban of ephedra, the Bush administration announced Friday that it has ordered a new safety review of the herbal supplement. The decision for the inquiry, which means a delay for possible new restrictions on ephedra, angered doctors and

Posted by Staff Writer
June 17, 2002 12:00 AM

An Illinois jury awarded $12.5 million last week to a retired orthopedic surgeon who was left paralyzed from the waist down while undergoing surgery. Dr. James York was admitted to Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center in 1998 for routine knee surgery. During the procedure, the attending anesthesiologist mistak

Posted by Staff Writer
June 14, 2002 12:00 AM

In a press release today, Immunex Corporation revealed that a new study shows the controversial rheumatoid arthritis medication Enbrel is safe and effective. According to the drug maker, of 629 patients using Enbrel for five years, 70 percent responded successfully to the drug. Enbrel also seemed to be well tolerated

Posted by Staff Writer
June 14, 2002 12:00 AM

A jury awarded $7.5 million this week to a Kansas woman who suffered irreversible brain injuries after undergoing an experimental neurological procedure without her consent. Mary Lou Zimmerman was suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder in 1998 when she decided to come to the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio for brain su

Posted by Staff Writer
June 13, 2002 12:00 AM

British health experts have concluded that the vaccine used to inoculate children against mumps, measles and rubella (MMR) is safe and effective, calming fears in the medical community that it may be linked to bowel disorders and autism. An inquiry carried out by Dr. Anna Donald of Bazian Ltd., a medical research anal

Posted by Staff Writer
June 12, 2002 12:00 AM

The wife of a Missouri pharmacist who pled guilty in February to twenty Federal counts of drug tampering agreed to pay $1.85 million to patients who fell victim to her husband's fraud. Robert Courtney initially admitted to diluting the chemotherapy drugs Taxol and Gemzar in order to save money. The pharmacist reporte

Posted by Staff Writer
June 12, 2002 12:00 AM

AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals has received reports of medication errors involving confusion between its atypical antipsychotic Seroquel (quetiapine fumarate), indicated for the treatment of schizophrenia, and Serzone (nefazodone hydrochloride), a product of Bristol-Myers Squibb, indicated for the treatment of depression.

Posted by Staff Writer
June 12, 2002 12:00 AM

A jury awarded $37.5 million Tuesday to a Florida smoker who alleged three of the nation's leading tobacco companies contributed to his terminal bladder and oral cancer. John Lukacs, a retired Miami lawyer and former World War II Navy pilot, smoked Philip Morris, Brown & Williamson and Liggett Group brand cigarettes f

Posted by Staff Writer
June 12, 2002 12:00 AM

Abbott Laboratories announced Tuesday that its 2002 earnings outlook would be significantly lower than expected due to problems at one of the pharmaceutical maker's manufacturing plants and lower sales of its antiobesity drug Meridia. Abbott expects its earnings to drop by 17 cents a share because of negative publicit

Posted by Staff Writer
June 11, 2002 12:00 AM

Government watchdog Public Citizen criticized the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last week for approving the reintroduction of the gastrointestinal drug Lotronex. In a press release issued last Friday, the interest group warned consumers that the new FDA restrictions are inadequate. According to Public Citiz

Posted by Staff Writer
June 11, 2002 12:00 AM

An infant under the supervision of Florida's now controversial Department of Children and Families (DCF) died Saturday, just days after agency officials were supposed to meet with the baby's family to check on her safety. The news brought more criticism to the troubled department, still facing questions in the case of

Posted by Staff Writer
June 11, 2002 12:00 AM

With Independence Day nearing, two interest groups are asking states to ban consumer use of fireworks, citing the thousands of injuries firecrackers cause every year. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) have each issued statements warning consumers of the danger

Posted by Staff Writer
June 10, 2002 12:00 AM

A new report published by the Florida Medical Examiner's office says that oxycodone, the main ingredient in the painkiller OxyContin, caused or contributed to more deaths last year in Florida than heroin. According to the examiner's office, it is the first time that the state has seen more deaths linked to a prescript

Posted by Staff Writer
June 10, 2002 12:00 AM

A California jury ordered America Online (AOL) last week to pay $5 million in damages to a former executive who was wrongly terminated by the company. Ronald Arnold, 49, was national head of information systems in Netscape Communications Corporation's Mountain View, California office when AOL purchased the company in

Posted by Staff Writer
June 07, 2002 12:00 AM

The FDA has approved labeling changes for Celebrex (celecoxib) based on the results of the Celecoxib Long-term Arthritis Safety Study (CLASS). CLASS was a prospective double-blind randomized safety trial that evaluated approximately 4000 patients with osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) treated with Celeb

Posted by Staff Writer
June 07, 2002 12:00 AM

A Superior Court judge fined tobacco giant R.J. Reynolds Co. $20 million Thursday for advertising cigarettes to teenagers in several popular magazines that have a substantial number of young readers. Judge Ronald Prager told Reynolds officials that the company had violated a 1998 settlement barring tobacco makers from

Posted by Staff Writer
June 06, 2002 12:00 AM

Just days after it was revealed that the Florida Department of Children & Families (DCF) could not account for nearly 1,000 children under its supervision, newly released documents now indicate the welfare agency's $230 million computer system may be flawed. Known as HomeSafenet, the computer program is designed to tr

Posted by Staff Writer
June 06, 2002 12:00 AM

Oklahoma's Attorney General, Drew Edmondson, announced this week that the state has filed suit against the owner and driver of a tugboat that rammed into an interstate highway last month, killing 14 people. On May 26, Capt. William Joe Dedmon, an employee of Magnolia Marine Transport Co., was pushing two barges up the

Posted by Staff Writer
June 05, 2002 12:00 AM

Twenty-nine states filed suit against the pharmaceutical maker Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. Tuesday alleging the drug manufacturer maintained a monopoly on the cancer medication Taxol by illegally delaying cheaper alternatives from entering the market. According to the complaint, Bristol-Myers obtained patents with the U.

Posted by Staff Writer
June 05, 2002 12:00 AM

Four of the nation's largest airlines, American, United, Continental and Northwest, are facing separate lawsuits filed by five passengers who were removed from flights last year in the wake of the September 11 attacks. Michael Dasrath, Edgardo Cureg, Aseem Bayaa, Hassan Sader and Arshad Chowdhury, all of either Middle

Posted by Staff Writer
June 05, 2002 12:00 AM

A new study conducted by the Massachusetts Tobacco Control Program indicates that the nation's leading tobacco manufacturer, U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co., is aggressively targeting children in its advertisements. According to the study, the company has nearly tripled its magazine advertising spending in the last five ye

Posted by Staff Writer
June 04, 2002 12:00 AM

According to a new report released today by one of the nation's largest pharmacy benefit managers, Express Scripts, COX-2 inhibitors such as Vioxx and Celebrex are often prescribed to patients who would just as likely benefit from far cheaper alternatives. COX-2 inhibitors are believed to be gentler on the body's dige

Posted by Staff Writer
June 04, 2002 12:00 AM

In one of the largest asbestos litigation settlements ever agreed to by an insurer, St. Paul Companies will pay out nearly $1 billion to compensate victims of asbestos exposure caused by products installed or distributed by the manufacturing company Western MacArthur. USF&G, which became a subsidiary of St. Paul in 19

Posted by Staff Writer
June 04, 2002 12:00 AM

The Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) is facing more questions and criticism this week after its announcement that the agency could not account for nearly 1,000 children in its system. In the wake of the now well-known case of Rilya Wilson, the 5-year-old foster child who was missing for over a year be

Posted by Staff Writer
June 03, 2002 12:00 AM

In the largest personal injury verdict to date involving "LASIK" eye surgery, an Arizona jury awarded a former United Airlines pilot $4 million for injuries he sustained due to the procedure. Steve Post, 35, underwent laser-eye surgery in May 2000 to correct nearsightedness. While on a test run two weeks before he wa

Posted by Staff Writer
June 03, 2002 12:00 AM

A Texas jury Friday ordered the owners of a tavern to pay nearly $1 million to three students injured in an automobile accident caused by a drunken driver. James M. Butler and his mother, Ann Lee Butler, owners of the Broken Spoke Saloon in Denton, were held responsible in the case for serving excessive amounts of alc

Posted by Staff Writer
June 03, 2002 12:00 AM

Verizon, one of the nation's largest telecommunications companies, was ordered to pay a former employee $1.7 million last month for failing to adequately provide for her disability. Doreen Smith, who suffered debilitating injuries from an attack of polio when she was two, required special assistance from her employer,

About the National News Desk

Our mission is to seek the complete truth and provide a full and fair account of the events and issues that surround personal safety, accident prevention, and injury recovery.  We are committed to serving the public with honesty and integrity in these efforts.

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