Lawsuits filed against NY, FDA regarding H1N1 vaccines
As many probably expected, a few lawsuits have risen out of the H1N1 vaccination mandate in New York state.
Lorna Patterson and Kathryn Dupuis registered nurse in Albany Medical Center’s emergency room, as well as two other nurses, plan to file a lawsuit against state Health Commissioner Dr. Richard Daines in order to put and end to the mandate, according to The Times-Union. The nurses attorney Terence L. Kindlon, plans to file the lawsuit this week.
Patterson told the press she does not want to lose her job, but she felt the vaccine was rushed into production without sufficient testing.
The FDA officially cleared the H1N1 vaccine on September 15, after undergoing “the same rigorous FDA manufacturing oversight, product quality testing and lot release procedures that apply to seasonal influenza vaccines,” according to Jesse Goodman, M.D., FDA acting chief scientist.
A similar suit was filed last week in New York City. On behalf of Susan Field, a registered nurse in New York, and 60,000 other healthcare workers in the state, Patricia Finn filed for a temporary restraining order last Tuesday in the State Supreme Court, reports Newsday. The restraining order was filed against Health Commissioner Richard Daines, M.D., and Jeffrey Kraut, chairman of the state’s Hospital Review and Planning Council, which approved the requirement. The hearing is scheduled for today. (See below for update).
Additionally a Bloomberg news report says “Rima Laibow, a physician, nurse Suzanne Field and four other New York residents” have asked a Federal Judge Reggie Walton to bar the approval of the H1N1 vaccine, and order New York to cease mandatory flu vaccinations.
Since New York is the first state to mandate flu shots, there is no legal precedent for this case. It would be surprising to see a federal judge bar an FDA approved vaccine, but it will be especially interesting to see how these lawsuits play out, if indeed they do.
Update: During yesterday’s hearing in Manhattan, attorney Patricia Finn asked Supreme Court Justice Marilyn Diamond to issue a temporary restraining order on mandatory flu vaccines for healthcare workers in New York, on behalf of registered nurse Suzanne Field.
Diamond refused to issue a temporary restraining order, but agreed to hear further arguments on the matter next Thursday where she will consider a preliminary injunction on the mandate.