the drug agency targeted by a class action lawsuit

After the Merck laboratory, a new collective legal action was launched in the Levothyrox case, against the National Medicines Safety Agency (ANSM) this time, by the same lawyer. Between March 2017 and April 2018, some 31,000 patients suffering from headaches, insomnia, dizziness and other side effects accused the new formulation of the drug to be the cause. Me Christophe Lèguevaques hopes to obtain “15,000 euros per applicant” for “Compensate moral prejudice of anxiety”, he said at an online press conference on Tuesday, September 14.

“People who feel concerned” can register until November 15 on an online platform to join this action, for 120 euros. The procedure is launched before the administrative tribunal of Montreuil (Seine-Saint-Denis), on which the ANSM depends. Already at the origin of another collective action against Merck, the laboratory which manufactures this drug for the thyroid, the lawyer notably accused the ANSM of a “Lack of vigilance” and a “Lack of anticipation” when the formula is changed.

Several legal proceedings

According to Merck, the new formula was supposed to provide more stability by modifying the excipients of Levothyrox and not its active substance (levothyroxine). In June 2019, a study conducted by the ANSM on more than two million patients concluded that the switch to the new formula had not caused any “Serious health problems”.

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This case is the subject of several legal proceedings. After the first collective action, the Lyon Court of Appeal estimated in June 2020 that Merck had committed ” a fault “ at the time of the change of formula, and had ordered him to pay 1,000 euros to each of the 3,000 plaintiffs. The laboratory appealed to the Supreme Court.

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In addition, in criminal proceedings, the case is the subject of a judicial investigation against X for alleged acts of aggravated deception, homicide and unintentional injuries and endangering the life of others. She is instructed by the health department of the Marseille tribunal de grande instance. The distribution of the old formula, which was supposed to stop, was eventually extended several times and will continue at least until the end of 2022.

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The World with AFP