May 8, 2010 / 1:29 AM / 10 years ago

UPDATE 1-Teva, Baxter ordered to pay $500 mln in Hep C case

* Teva ordered to pay $356 mln; Baxter to pay $144 mln

* Lawsuit stems from largest Hepatitis C outbreak

* Lawyer says more cases to come

* Teva says plans to contest verdict (Adds statement from Teva)

NEW YORK, May 7 (Reuters) - Teva Pharmaceutical Industries TEVA.O and Baxter Healthcare Services (BAX.N) on Friday were ordered to pay a combined $500 million in punitive damages to a Nevada man who contracted Hepatitis C during an outbreak two years ago.

The Clark County District Court jury in Nevada ordered Teva to pay $356 million and Baxter to pay $144 million in the largest jury award in Nevada history, attorney Robert Eglet said.

In a statement, Teva said it “plans to contest the verdict vigorously.”

A spokesman for Baxter did not immediately return messages seeking comment.

Eglet said Henry Chanin and more than 100 others contracted the liver disease Hepatitis C after the anesthetic propofol were reused for colonoscopy or endoscopy procedures. Teva made the drug and Baxter distributed it, Eglet said.

Teva said it continues to believe that the evidence shows the company acted responsibly. The label for its propofol product clearly states that it is for single patient use only and that aseptic procedures should be used at all times.

Chanin’s trial marked the first of what could be many, said Eglet, who is representing more than 40 Hepatitis C patients. (Reporting by Steve Eder and Phil Wahba; editing by Carol Bishopric)

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