Today Merck introduced a new shingles vaccine called Zostavax, which is apparently backed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The company’s new drug is put in a positive light after the recent Vioxx scandal, which included thousands of lawsuits from patients who suffered from strokes, heart attacks and blood clots while using the drug that was pulled from the shelves as a result.
In May 2006 the FDA approved Zostavax as an effective vaccine in preventing shingles for people over 60. Shingles is a painful rash and disease caused by the same virus that causes chicken pox.
Merck must be delighted that the CDC is now recommending that people over age 60 receive the vaccine and that insurance companies cover it. That still doesn’t change the company’s looming cloud of defective drug ligitation hanging over Merck’s head.
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