Supreme Court In Vaccine Case Rules In Favor Of Big PhamaSubmitted by LearnRonPaul on Tue, 02/22/2011 - 13:52
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WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a federal law bars lawsuits against drug makers over serious side effects from childhood vaccines.
By a 6-2 vote, the court ruled against the parents of a child who sued the drug maker Wyeth in Pennsylvania state court for the health problems they say their daughter, now 19, suffered from a vaccine she received in infancy.
Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the court, said Congress set up a special vaccine court to handle such claims as a way to provide compensation to injured children without driving drug manufacturers from the vaccine market. The idea, he said, was to create a no-fault system that spares the drug companies the costs of defending against parents' lawsuits.
Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor dissented. Nothing in the 1986 law "remotely suggests that Congress intended such a result," Sotomayor wrote, taking issue with Scalia.
Scalia's opinion was a stinging defeat for parents who found their award from the vaccine court insufficient or failed to collect at all.