Philips CPAP Class Action

John Morel v. Koninklijke Philips N.V., Philips Electronics Ltd., and Respironics Inc., SCBC No. S216008, Vancouver Registry

Rice Harbut Elliott, Thomson Rogers and Sotos Class Actions have filed claims for a proposed Canadian class action regarding sleep apnea machines and ventilators. Millions of devices manufactured, marketed, and sold by Philips and/or related companies are subject to a recall arising out of concerns identified by the company that foam used in the devices may cause serious health issues, including cancer. The devices were recalled by Philips in the United States on June 14, 2021 and by Health Canada on June 23.

  • Class Action Details
  • Affected Products
  • Updates

Class Action Details

The claim concerns sleep and respiratory care devices manufactured, marketed, and sold by the Defendants, particularly Philips Respironics branded Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP), Bi-Level Positive Airway Pressure (BIPAP), and Mechanical Ventilators. The devices are manufactured with a Polyester-Based Polyurethane (PE-PUR) sound abatement foam, which degrades over time and under certain conditions into toxic particles which may be inhaled or ingested by the user. The toxic particles may cause cancer, respiratory damage or irritation, inflammation, irritation, nausea/vomiting, hypersensitivity, and/or headache.

Please see the Notice of Civil Claim for more details.

Affected Products

Below is a list Philips devices affected by the recall:

-The A-Series BiPAP A30;
-The A-Series BiPAP A40;
-The A-Series BiPAP V30 Auto;
-The A-Series Hybrid A30;
-The BiPAP Auto Bi-Flex, with Humidifier, with Smartcard, Canada;
-The BiPAP Auto Bi-Flex, with Smartcard, Canada;
-The BiPAP Auto SV Advanced system One;
-The BiPAP AVAPS, C Series Ventilatory Support System-Domestic;
-The BiPAP AVAPS, C Series Ventilatory Support System-Core PKG, Domestic;
-The BiPAP AVAPS Ventilatory Support System-Canada;
-The BiPAP AVAPS Ventilatory Support System-Core PKG, Canada;
-The BiPAP Pro Bi-Flex, with Humidifier, with Smartcard, Canada;
-The BiPAP Pro Bi-Flex, with Smartcard, Canada;
-The BiPAP ST, C Series Ventilatory Support System-Canada;
-The BiPAP ST, C Series Ventilatory Support System, Core PKG, Canada;
-The BiPAP ST, C Series Ventilatory Support System-Core PKG, Domestic;
-The C Series (ASV, S/T, AVAPS);
-The Dorma 400, 500;
-The DreamStation (ASV);
-The DreamStation Auto BiPAP;
-The DreamStation Auto CPAP;
-The DreamStation BiPAP Auto SV, CA;
-The DreamStation BiPAP Auto SV, w/Humidifier, CA;
-The DreamStation BiPAP Auto SV, w/Humidifier/Heated Tube, CA;
-The DreamStation BiPAP Pro;
-The DreamStation CPAP;
-The DreamStation CPAP Pro;
-The DreamStation Expert;
-The DreamStation GO;
-The DreamStation GO Auto CPAP;
-The DreamStation GO Auto CPAP with Humidifier, Canada;
-The DreamStation GO CPAP;
-The DreamStation GO CPAP with Humidifier, Canada;
-The DreamStation (CPAP, Auto CPAP, BiPAP);
-The DreamStation (ST, AVAPS);
-The E30;
-The Garbin Plus, Aeris, LifeVent;
-The OmniLab Advanced Plus;
-The OmniLab Advanced, Domestic;
-The OmniLab, Domestic Core;
-The REMStar Auto with Humidifier, with SD Card, A-FLEX, Canada;
-The REMStar Auto with SD Card, A-Flex, Canada;
-The REMStar SE Auto;
-The Restar Plus with Humidifier, with SD Card, C-FLEX, Canada;
-The Restar Plus with SD Card, C-Flex, Canada;
-The Restar Pro with Humidifier, with SD Card, C-FLEX+, Canada;
-The Restar Pro with SD Card, C-FLEX+, Canada; and
-The Restar, with Smartcard, Canada;
-The Restart, with Humidifier, with Smartcard, Canada;
-The SystemOne;
-The Trilogy 100; and
-The Trilogy 200;

Updates

– September 8, 2021: Given the high volume of registrations by class members, class counsel have set up a dedicated website for class members to register: https://cpapclassaction.ca/.

– September 7, 2021: This CPAP action seeks to represent class members who purchased and used one of the recalled Philips CPAP or BIPAP machines. We are seeking a full refund or replacement unit for all class members; in addition, we are seeking damages for pain and suffering caused by adverse health issues, injuries caused by the direct use of these machines as well as damages for the health care costs incurred as a result. We anticipate there are over 100,000 Canadians who use or have used a Philips CPAP or BIPAP machine. Any person in Canada who used one of the recalled Philips machines is automatically a class member.

Since we launched this action, we have been contacted by many people who have asked for our advice on what to do. If you are using the device for medical reasons, you should first consult your physician and follow their advice. We cannot provide medical advice. We understand that each individual must make his or her own decision about whether to replace the unit with another model, wait for Philips to repair or replace the model, or continue using their existing model. This decision should be based on what is appropriate in your individual circumstance, including any medical advice received.

We understand that this is a difficult decision. We are aware of these concerns and will factor them into our approach in the lawsuit.

On September 1, Philips announced its plans to repair or replace the recalled devices. Philips has advised that it will repair or replace affected units in Canada and other jurisdictions but has not yet provided a firm timeline to do so.

For customers in the United States, Philips has begun either removing the toxic PE-PUR foam or replacing older models with their DreamStation 2. However, this is happening relatively slowly: Philips has advised that this process will take roughly 12 months.

For full details, see their press statement here.

Unfortunately, lawsuits take time, and it is not likely that any resolution will be achieved in the near future. Please sign up if you would like to receive future updates.

– August 12, 2021: Rice Harbut Elliott has come to an agreement with Sotos and Thomson Rogers to proceed together in British Columbia, rather than in Ontario.

– July 16, 2021: Plaintiff issued Statement of Claim in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice.

Note: You are not obliged to fill in this form to participate in this class action. If you choose to do so, you are not retaining RHE LLP to act on your behalf. Providing the information requested does not make you a client of RHE LLP. All information submitted will be treated as confidential and will only be released as required by law or as you may consent.

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