Johnson & Johnson reported that it spent $271 million on the litigation of DePuy ASR hip recall cases during the first 3 months of this year. That’s almost a quarter of a billion dollars in legal fees. The real question is how much of that money was spent paying the victims of their defective metal on metal hip implant.
Ironically, while J&J is showing profits of $3.91 BILLION dollars this quarter, their orthopedic sales in the U.S. dropped 3.5% because of the DePuy hip recall trouble. But don’t worry, Johnson & Johnson made up the losses by increasing their international orthopedic sales, ending up with a $1.4 million dollar profit.But what have patients living with the metal poisoning from recalled DePuy ASR hips ended up with this quarter? More uncertainty, more surgery, more pain, and less money. J&J CEO Bill Weldon’s optimism about the future is a slap in the face: “We have turned the corner on a particularly difficult period for our company,” Weldon was quoted in the International Business Times. “We feel positive about where our consumer business is headed in 2012.”
Weldon will be stepping down from his CEO position sometime in the next few days with a severance package of about $143.5 million. Of course Johnson and Johnson is providing NO “severance package” for patients with the defective DePuy ASR hips. Instead, J&J and DePuy continue to deny any responsibility.