Kimberly-Clark Facing $454-Million Gown Verdict

Posted April 12, 2017 at 7:28 pm

A barrier gown that’s designed to protect healthcare professionals from communicable diseases had better live up to its claims or the manufacturer could end up on the wrong end of a multimillion-dollar class-action lawsuit.

That’s precisely what’s happened to Kimberly-Clark Corp., whose product line includes a protective surgical gown dubbed MicroCool, according to news reports. A doctor in Los Angeles filed a lawsuit in 2014 against the company based in Irving, TX, claiming that the gowns weren’t sufficient to protect wearers against communicable diseases, such as Ebola. Fast-forward to April 2017, and an LA jury recently agreed with the plaintiff—and rendered a fraud verdict against Kimberly-Clark to the tune of $454 million in compensatory and punitive damages. The plaintiffs argued that the company had misrepresented the gown’s ability to protect wearers against infectious diseases.

Kimberly-Clark has promised to appeal the verdict, which it describes as “baseless and excessive.” What’s more, the company disputes the claims against MicroCool, noting that it’s sold 70 million of the gowns and that to date it hasn’t received a single injury complaint. Click here and here to learn more.