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A federal jury in Denver on Wednesday returned a verdict against dialysis giant DaVita, awarding $383.5 million in wrongful death lawsuits brought by the families of three patients who died of cardiac arrest after treatments at clinics.

DaVita staff treated the patients with GranuFlo, a product the Denver-based dialysis company knew could cause toxic pH imbalances and alkalosis, according to a news release from Hagens Berman, a law firm representing the plaintiffs.

Jury verdicts returned Wednesday in U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado awarded each of the three parties $125 million in punitive damages, with compensatory damages ranging from $1.5 million to $5 million, Hagens Berman said.

In 2012, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a Class 1 recall of GranuFlo. Multiple wrongful deaths suits were filed against DaVita in 2013 alleging negligence and fraud.

The dialysis provider failed to inspect and review the composition of GranuFlo and notice alarming blood changes when patients returned for dialysis treatments, according to the complaints. DaVita should have “been aware of the uptick in reports of death and complications” related to GranuFlo.


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