MDL Judge Awards Merck Summary Judgment in Bellwether Zostavax Action
July 7, 2021
PHILADELPHIA — The judge overseeing the federal Zostavax MDL docket has awarded Merck summary judgment in a bellwether case on the basis that the plaintiff failed to proffer an expert that his injection with the vaccine caused him to develop shingles eight years later.
In a July 6 order, Senior Judge Harvey Bartle III of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania explained that whether Zostavax caused the plaintiff’s shingles is “a complex medical question outside the scope of knowledge of a layperson.”
In 2008, John Destefano’s doctor recommended Zostavax, which had been approved by the Food …