Torts Keyed to Epstein
Berkovitz v. United States
Kevan Berkovitz, then a 2-month-old infant, ingested a dose of Orimune, an oral polio vaccine manufactured by Lederle Laboratories. Within one month, he contracted a severe case of polio. It was determined that Berkovitz had contracted polio from the vaccine. Berkovitz and his parents (Plaintiffs) sued the United States in Federal District Court. The complaint alleged that the United States was liable for his injuries under the FRTCA because the Division of Biologic Standards (DBS) had acted wrongfully in licensing Lederle Laboratories to produce Orimune and because the Bureau of Biologics of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had acted wrongfully in approving release to the public of the particular lot of vaccine containing Berkovitz’s dose. The Government moved to dismiss the suit for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction on the ground that the agency actions fell within the discretionary function exception of the FTCA. The District Court denied this motion.
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