May 6, 2010
AALS 2011: Vaccines and Drugs: A Brave New Tort World
The proliferation of vaccine and pharmaceutical drug-related injuries challenges our conceptions of how the tort system can best meet its compensatory and regulatory aims in the 21st century. In 1986, Congress created the National Childhood Vaccine Act, establishing a no-fault compensation scheme for vaccine-related injuries. In 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari in Bruesewitz v. Wyeth, Inc. to decide whether design defect claims against vaccine manufacturers are preempted. This follows closely on the heels of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Wyeth v. Levine, finding that failure to warn claims against a drug manufacturer were not preempted. Our panelists—who include two prominent torts and products liability scholars (Mary Davis and Bob Rabin), a seasoned litigator (Mal Wheeler), and a policy expert (James Copland)—will explore whether it makes sense to have separate legal regimes for vaccines and other pharmaceuticals. They will also address issues at the core of tort law in the modern administrative state: the need for no-fault victim compensation and the respective roles of litigation and governmental regulation.
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It might be worthwhile to consider the part played by the anti-vaccine celebrities in the preventable illnesses and deaths of children. The NCVA was a response to the actions of similar groups. Do we want to live in a world with limited availability of vaccines? Does any parent?
Posted by: Rogue Medic | May 6, 2010 7:04:10 AM