$1.4 Million Compensation Granted for Virus Exposure Causing Paralyzing Illness to a Worker
Becky McClain of Deep River, who reportedly got infected by a genetically engineered virus produced in Gorton lab of the company, has been granted compensation of $1.37 million by the US district court Jury at Hartford. The scientist also stated that she was fired when she tried to raise alarm regarding the safety matter.
A federal jury, on Thursday came up with the decision of compensation and also underlined the risk that the workers might suffer in biotechnology industry with some regulations as the solutions for preventing any such case further.
The new and improved regulations for the biological materials in the labs will be opted by the Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration, announced the new Head of the agency on Friday.
The court ruling, however, was not based on the paralyzing illness that McClain still claims to suffer, as the court stated that not much evidenced was provided by her, but the judgment considered it a case of worker's compensation. Jury stated that the law of shielding free speech and expression and whistle-blowers was violated by Pfizer by firing Ms. McClain. She has been with company since 1996.
On the other hand, Pfizer disagreed with the allegations and clarified that the matter of safety concerns was raised by McClain following her firing that was due to her absence from work.