Johnson & Johnson Unit Recalls Potentially Slow-Acting Motrin

Johnson & Johnson’s McNeil Consumer Healthcare division is issuing yet another over-the-counter drug recall. According to a statement issued by McNeil, 12 million bottles of Motrin are being recalled because they may not dissolve as quickly as intended when nearing their expiration date. Should this occur, Motrin users may experience a delay in getting relief from the medication.

The recall involves retain lots of MOTRIN® IB 24 count COATED CAPLETS, MOTRIN® IB 24 count COATED TABLETS and MOTRIN® IB 24+6 count COATED CAPLETS. The affected lots were distributed in United States, Puerto Rico, Bahamas, Fiji, Belize, St. Lucia and Jamaica.

The Motrin recall affects retailers only. Consumers do not need to dispose of or return the product. There is no safety concern if consumers continue taking the product in accordance with its label; however, it is possible there may be a delay in experiencing relief, McNeil said. Consumer with any concerns should contact McNeil’s Consumer Call Center at 1-888-222-6036 (available Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern Time).

This is the latest in a series of recalls for Johnson & Johnson, which has been plagued by manufacturing quality problems over the past two years. According to a report from Bloomberg News, McNeil agreed in March to give U.S. regulators stepped-up oversight at three manufacturing plants, after the division had to pull tens of millions of packages of over-the-counter drugs for quality concerns.

The Motrin recall was issued the same day a federal judge ruled that Johnson & Johnson must defend a shareholder lawsuit filed over the company’s quality control failures. According to Bloomberg, the lawsuit alleges Johnson & Johnson misled investors about manufacturing problems that led to dozens of drug recalls. On Monday, U.S. District Judge Freda Wolfson ruled that the lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson, Colleen Goggins, the former head of its consumer group, and another executive may go forward. However, the judge dismissed claims against Chief Executive Officer William Weldon and Peter Luther, president of the McNeil division.

The case focuses on recalls of over-the-counter drugs made at McNeil plants in Las Piedras, Puerto Rico, and Fort Washington, Pennsylvania. The lawsuit claims the defendants made misleading statements about details of the recalls and that investors suffered stock losses after the true reasons for the recalls became public, Bloomberg said.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Johnson & Johnson’s string of recalls have cost the company about $900 million.

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