Supreme Court / Challenges
Challenge Comes in Establishing a Precedent-Setting Proposal to the Illinois Supreme Court
Courts in a handful of states have recognized medical monitoring in the absence of a present physical injury either as an independent tort claim or as a theory of “remedy” that substitutes for injury in otherwise traditional negligence claims. Other courts have outright rejected medical monitoring without present injury, while in many states medical monitoring remains an open question. Illinois is one such state that remains in a “grey area” in terms of accepting medical monitoring claims.
We are of the opinion that just because it hasn’t been done doesn’t mean it can’t be done
According to Bexis, 2009 Medical Monitoring – Another 50-State Survey” (Click here)
“…courts in Illinois are all over the lot, and the state’s Supreme Court has not yet resolved the issue. Several federal district court opinions (not all in Illinois) have concluded that Illinois would recognize independent claims for medical monitoring. Stella v. LVMH Perfumes & Cosmetics USA, Inc., 564 F. Supp.2d 833, 836 (N.D. Ill. 2008); Gates v. Rohm & Haas Co., 2007 WL 2155665, at *4-5 (E.D. Pa. July 26, 2007) (applying Illinois law); Muniz v. Rexnord Corp., 2006 WL 1519571, at *6-7 (N.D. Ill. May 26, 2006); Carey v. Kerr-McGee Chemical Corp., 999 F. Supp. 1109, 1119 (N.D. Ill. 1998). State courts, on the other hand, have been quite a bit more hesitant. See Jensen v. Bayer AG, 862 N.E.2d 1091, 1100-1101 (Ill. App. 2007) (medical monitoring claims “lack merit”); Lewis v. Lead Industries Ass’n, Inc., 793 N.E.2d 869, 877 (Ill. App. 2003) (declining to permit a medical monitoring remedy as an independent equitable claim); Campbell v. A.C. Equipment Services Corp., 610 N.E.2d 745, 748 (Ill. App. 1993) (cautioning that this decision “should not be construed as recognizing” medical monitoring); see also Guillory v. American Tobacco Co., 2001 WL 290603, at *7 (N.D. Ill. 2001) (rejecting medical monitoring)
Another Interpretation of Medical Monitoring can take the form of Patient Education and Advocacy, in which local area Physicians engage in ongoing continuing education to inform on the status of health risks, incidence and prevalence of illnesses attributable to Ethylene Oxide exposure. In addition, we recognize the strength of patient advocacy and herald those who are brave enough to tell their stories of overcoming health struggles they believe may be attributable to Ethylene Oxide’s carcinogenic, mutagenic, and endocrine-disrupting principles. You will see featured patients in our Tell Us Your Story section of this website; we encourage Illinois residents to submit their health struggles so that we may begin the final phase of our joint mission: the establishment of a local registry of health hazards that show a demonstrable correlation with anticipated negative consequences of long-term Ethylene Oxide exposure.
For as stated in the IL Department of Public Health Cancer Incidence Assessment near Sterigenics in Willowbrook, IL, 1995-2015 “this study represents the first study of its kind in the nation.” (Click here) However, other states have been successful in creating a muilti-faceted statutory framework supporting Medical Monitoring from a medico-legal standpoint. Vermont is one such example. (Click here)
We are of the opinion that there exists tremendous potential to engage local and regional physicians in the process of educating others. We anticipate successful recruitment of volunteers from the medical community who will be willing and eager to work on the medical monitoring of their patients, families, and neighbors in order to better understand the complex interrelationship between environmental toxicity and human health response.