The lawsuit and then damages: Parents joining forces against CryoSave
A group of parents who preserved umbilical cord stem cells in the Swiss company CryoSave, which has recently closed, will file a lawsuit in the local court. In 12 years of business activities of Swiss CryoSave in Serbia, 12,864 families have signed a contract for the preservation of stem cells from umbilical cord blood. The company also did business in the region, namely Italy and Bulgaria. They stored a total of around 330,000 samples. It was our family that discovered they are having work problems, when it wanted to use stem cells for treatment of a child. “When cells of my family and another family were unsuccessfully transported for the purpose of a treatment, we launched an investigation in Switzerland and proceedings were launched in this year’s May. The proceedings were completed quickly and in our favour, which triggered criminal proceedings against those responsible, and company’s licence was revoked,” says lawyer and a parent Rastko Petakovic. Immediately after the affair was revealed, “CryoSave” lost its work license in Serbia as well. Most of the samples were transferred to one of the largest banks in Poland. Competent institutions convince parents that they have no reason to worry. “What matters is that the samples were transferred, the whole process was recorded and documented, as reported by “Famicord Stem Cell Bank”, and they are currently in Poland,” explains Marija Zecevic of the Association of Stem Cells Family Banks Representatives. The families that lost stem cells will first seek compensation and justice before a Swiss court. “During next week, we will initiate actions aimed at organizing parents into an association, which will try to launch a collective lawsuit before the Swiss authorities,” Petakovic said. All of this, he points out, goes hand in hand with efforts to punish those responsible by both domestic and Swiss authorities, to shed the light on everything that happened and to return money to those who paid for preservation.