AMS & Lawsuit Loans
First I want to thank the Reuters News reporters for doing such a great job of covering the dirty side of mesh lawsuits because I began reporting about what was going on three years ago, trying to raise awareness so that women did not get into trouble when they receive a lawsuit offer, or worse yet, their case would be voided because they had taken a loan against their surgery.
Believe me I realize when you have pain and problems you can get tempted to do this, but the consequences could be bad. I also know that there are women who STILL believe all the hype from the law marketing sites that one day they will get millions. This is not true. If you hang your life on this, you will be sorely disappointed.
I don’t know if any woman has had an unnecessary surgery, because all the women I have spoken to have been in serious trouble. However if even ONE woman does this, it will blacken the names of every other woman who signs up for a lawsuit and not only that jeopardize the future of many more mesh injured women. It will also take away from the truth of what mesh does to many women. I am giving you the entire article so you do not have to look it up, because it is important to read.
Fri May 20, 2016 | 11:34 AM EDT
Pelvic mesh maker AMS claims women were lured into needless surgeries
Pelvic mesh maker AMS claims women were lured into…
By Alison Frankel and Jessica Dye
(Reuters) – American Medical Systems, a major defendant in litigation over controversial vaginal mesh devices, is accusing “a pyramid of businessmen, doctors and lawyers” of luring women into unwarranted surgeries to remove the implants and inflate their damages claims. ANY doctor who accepted your case against your lawsuit should also be reprimanded. Women should go with the age old premise that if it sounds too good to be true, it is!
The company, a unit of Ireland-based Endo International , has set aside $1.9 billion to settle as many as 49,000 lawsuits alleging injury from the devices, but it asserts it should not have to pay for unnecessary medical procedures. No one could argue that they should not pay for unnecessary procedures and the burden of proof that this happed will be on them. However, one woman caught doing this will throw a terrible hook into the bucket of all the truly injured women.
Reuters previously reported that a new breed of financier is profiting from surgery on patients involved in litigation against mesh makers: These medical funders, often working through specialized brokers, put up the money for operations in anticipation of recouping their investment, plus a hefty return, when the patients’ lawsuits settle.
Yes, they have been doing this for a while and I can assure you that they marketed through Facebook as well, by using other women. These women MUST have collected money for trying to persuade women to take a loan or why else would they do this. It would not make sense if they were not. They did it through support groups by sending private messages to injured women. This is why I find these groups are not always ethical.
Now AMS says it has evidence that at least four women were persuaded to undergo surgeries that their own doctors did not recommend. Funding for their procedures was arranged by a lending company working with the doctors who performed them. I believe if they do have evidence they should share it with the world because it may or may not be the women’s fault. Many are in financial stress and these loans are tempting. However the loan companies should be named and prosecuted.
Hundreds more women may have been similarly steered into mesh removal procedures by a network of lenders, doctors and attorneys “orchestrating the exploitation of unsophisticated medical and legal consumers and seeking to perpetrate a fraud,” AMS said in a May 12 filing in West Virginia federal court. Dirt like this could go badly for many women who do not deserve this.
Members of this alleged network deny wrongdoing. They say they helped injured women receive necessary medical care they could not afford or could not obtain from nearby doctors. They say AMS is trying to divert attention from its own liability for flawed devices. Regardless of their denial, what is at stake was huge money to be made and this taints a whole lot of women’s cases.
AMS is seeking court authorization to obtain more testimony from members of the alleged network. A spokeswoman for Endo, which has ceased selling the mesh devices, declined to comment. Yes, take THEM to court. Do use this against women who are truly injured.
CALLS FROM TELEMARKETERS
One example cited by AMS is Judy Buzzell, who was implanted with a mesh device to treat urinary incontinence in 2009.In 2014, according to Buzzell’s testimony, she received unsolicited phone calls from telemarketers who falsely said her device had been recalled by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The callers said they could find her a lawyer and arrange travel to a surgeon who would remove the mesh at no upfront cost.
AMS sought testimony from the doctor who implanted Buzzell’s device, who said that when Buzzell consulted him after the telemarketers’ phone calls, he found no mesh-related symptoms and did not recommend removal.
Buzzell testified that she decided to proceed anyway because she was experiencing pain and bleeding. Although she had health insurance, the telemarketer and another go-between helped her arrange a $21,000 advance from LawCash, a litigation funder, to pay for surgery and travel from her home in Maine to a doctor in Georgia. Here is where there is a catch 22. If she had insurance, why go through a lending company. There is another side to this that doctors are always telling women there is not a problems even when mesh is hanging out of their vaginas. They will continue doing this because they are also part of a network of doctors who want to continue implanting mesh into women. This is why I say go to UCLA for a diagnosis because they are NOT PART OF ANY LENDING GROUPS. They won’t remove mesh unless ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY.
According to her contract, which is part of the court record, Buzzell owes 39 percent annual interest, payable if her lawsuit settles. As of August, the total will be $46,500. Yes this is so true.
Based on AMS’s $1.9 billion fund and the number of eligible claims, the average amount available per plaintiff is approximately $39,000, although actual payments are confidential and vary based on individual facts.
“I’m screwed on it as far as paying it back, I know that,” Buzzell testified. “But for me to get rid of my pain that I wanted to get rid of, it was worth the trip down and back to get it done.” This is the risk you take when borrowing money through your lawsuit. If it is proven you did take money without it being necessary, it will come back to haunt you. All I can say is, she had better have good proof of all her suffering, before she had it removed. It is the ONLY thing that may save her. However, the prove should also have been from the loan company who willingly handed her money without it, if indeed it was NOT necessary.
Buzzell declined to comment for this story.
LawCash general counsel Lew Fidler said his company advanced money only to patients who “were desperate for surgery, needed surgery and complained about their circumstances.” Did they ask for proof it WAS necessary? I doubt it. All they could see was how they were going to get rich from women’s lawsuits.
According to court filings, Buzzell’s surgery was arranged by another company that acted as a matchmaker between patients and doctors and received a commission from LawCash. Buzzell’s surgeon in Georgia, Michael Hulse, worked frequently with that intermediary, Surgical Assistance. Hulse received about $10,000 for Buzzell’s procedure. This goes on all the time, much more than you would believe. Too many people taking a piece of the pie. This truly taints the waters of these lawsuits.
Hulse did not respond to requests for comment. Blake Barber, who runs Surgical Assistance, said he encouraged women who contacted him for mesh removal surgery to first seek care from local physicians and use their health insurance. Yes, no one wants to comment.
AMS contends the heart of the “illicit enterprise” was a Florida-based marketing company that found potential mesh plaintiffs and supplied client leads to Surgical Assistance. The company, Law Firm Headquarters, bills itself as a “legal marketing and support organization.” As Reuters has reported, AMS subpoenaed Law Firm Headquarters, and several related law firms in March. You know, there is a lot of bad stuff that comes out of Florida I am sad to say. I do not know exactly who Jane Akre works for but she is involved with a marketing company in Florida and she lives Florida.
An attorney for Law Firm Headquarters, Abbe Lowell, said the company was trying to help women harmed by AMS’s products.
“(AMS’s) tactics will only delay resolution of these cases, to the further detriment of those who have been injured,” Lowell said.
So what will happen now? Many good women will pay the price of this bad publicity.
Here is a blog you should read. http://www.meshangels.com/big-lawsuit-scam/
I have tried to warn women for a long time and you can read this blog to know. http://www.meshangels.com/borrowing-money/
You really cannot trust anyone. http://www.meshangels.com/who-do-you-trust/
If you have never read this blog, you truly should. http://www.meshangels.com/story-tellers/