Johnson and Johnson 'faulty' hip implants: SC seeks Centre’s response to plea seeking action against officials

A view of the Supreme Court of India, in New Delhi. File   | Photo Credit: Rajeev Bhatt

The Supreme Court on Friday sought the Central government’s response to a petition seeking action against government officials who cleared the sale of the “faulty” DePuy ASR hip implants of Johnson and Johnson “without proper clinical trial”.

A Bench, led by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, asked the government to respond to a petition filed by A.K. Goenka, represented by advocate Vivek Narayan Sharma.

The petition said the lives of 14,525 patients in India were in danger due to the “large scale and illegal implantation of faulty, deadly and poisonous DePuy ASR Hip Implants”.

The petition has arraigned the Centre through the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), the Mumbai police, Johnson & Johnson and Depuy Orthopaedics based in the U.S. as respondents.

The petition said a total of 15,820 units were imported and sold from the year 2005 till 2010. Out of this, around 4,700 were implanted in patients here. “After the recall of the implants, only around 1,295 units were returned. The balance 9,825 DePuy ASR Hip implant units are “untraceable” according to the records.

“These implants were to help people all around the world with an active lifestyle. More than success, it’s failure has cost serious damage to the body and spirit of patients,” Mr. Sharma submitted.

Plea seeks directive for advertisement

The petition wants the court to direct the government to advertise nationally about the faulty units, so that patients may be made aware of the serious danger they are in. “Most patients not even know that their bodies have poisonous contents… they may bear unknown and grave medical conditions,” the petition said.

The court asked the government to respond to a plea to set up a special investigation team of medical officers and senior police officers. The petition asked for an inquiry against CDSCO officials responsible for issuing clearance certificate for the faulty product without proper clinical trial.

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Printable version | Oct 24, 2021 3:25:47 AM |

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