It’s been almost two months since my last post. Although not writing here, I have been busy writing – including a number of briefs in an ongoing products’ liability case and a separate case involving a public contract in Alabama. Both cases share a common (and troubling) issue. Both involve serious public issues shrouded in secrecy by confidentiality orders. One case involves a medical device marketed and implanted in women despite huge dangers known by the manufacturer. The other involves a company with a public contract affecting health benefits for thousands of beneficiaries across Alabama.
In the medical device case, patients and their doctors should have access to important information concerning research, testing, and FDA approval. Yet, they do not. Many of these documents are shielded from disclosure by court order. How many women could have been saved from the chronic pain and disabling injuries of this product? Why should any company ever be allowed to implant its devices in people without disclosing the chemicals that comprise it? If only important information had been disclosed.
In the public contract case, Alabama’s citizens should have access to information concerning how a company spends their taxpayer money. Yet, they do not. Why should any company ever be allowed to spend public money in secret? Yet, much of this information is shielded from disclosure by court order.