LOS ANGELES -- A representative for St. Jude Medical Inc. says the health care provider has not seen a lawsuit alleging that a patient was implanted with a defective device - and weren't aware it was being filed.

“St. Jude Medical has not been served with the lawsuit in question,” Candace Steele Flippin, vice president, external communication for St. Jude Medical Inc., told Legal Newsline

"The attorneys who initiated this case did not contact the company before its filing and have not reached out to the company since the filing.”

Clinton W. Ross Jr. of Illinois filed a class action lawsuit individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated Aug. 26 in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California against St. Jude Medical Inc., St. Jude Medical S.C. Inc. and Pacesetter Inc., doing business as St. Jude Medical Cardiac Rhythm Management Division, alleging breach of warranty, fraud, negligence and unjust enrichment in making false claims regarding the Merlin@home transmitter.

The transmitter works from the patient’s home, using a telephone landline, transmitting information from an implanted medical device in the patient to the secure St. Jude Medical website, Merlin.net Patient Care Network, according to the St. Jude website.

“Remote monitoring is a safe and effective way for physicians to gain additional information about their patients and respond to certain changes in heart or device function,” Steele Flippin said. 

“It has become the recommended standard of care and studies continue to prove the positive impact of remote monitoring, helping physicians to improve patient outcomes and reduce healthcare costs.”

According to the complaint, Ross suffered damages from being implanted with a cardiac device that did not work as well as advertised or intended. The plaintiff alleges the defendants failed to inform Ross that the class of implanted devices lacked necessary security.

Steele Flippin said St. Jude is confident in the Merlin@home transmitter.

“St. Jude Medical’s highest priority is the safety of patients who depend on our life-enhancing and life-sustaining devices. We stand behind the security of our devices and have taken and will continue to take appropriate steps to maintain and enhance the security of our devices in the dynamic cyber security environment,” she said.

Ross seeks a trial by jury, restitution, damages, disgorgement, interest, all legal fees and all other relief the court deems just. He is represented by attorneys Mike Arias and Alfredo Torrijos of Arias Sanguinetti Stahle & Torrijos LLP in Los Angeles, and by Elise R. Sanguinetti and Jamie G. Goldstein of the same firm in Oakland.

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Arias, Sanguinetti, Stahle & Torrijos
6701 Center Drive West
Los Angeles, CA - 90045

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