Philips’ ventilator recall woes, which stemmed from the breathing support machines causing patient health issues due to the type of polyurethane foam that was being used in the device, are now under investigation by French prosecutors.
The Dutch devicemaker is now in the crosshairs of French prosecutors. The Paris public prosecutor’s office confirmed to Reuters on Thursday that they’ve opened a preliminary criminal investigation into the recall, which began in June 2021 and concerns the polyester-based foam embedded in many of Philips’ CPAP and BiPAP machines, ventilators and other respiratory devices.
The French investigation kicked off a year later, on June 20. A spokesperson for the prosecutors told Reuters that the probe stems from “complaints filed on the grounds of aggravated deception, involuntary attacks on physical integrity, endangerment of the life of others and administration of harmful substances.”
According to a France Info report, the country’s National Medicines Agency has received almost 3,000 reports of adverse effects linked to the recalled respiratory devices. An estimated 370,000 of the affected machines had been distributed in France at the time of the recall; so far, only about a third of them have been fixed or replaced since Philips began its repair program last fall, per the report.
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