Philips Respironics Accepts $479 Million CPAP Settlement

One of the nation’s largest makers of sleep apnea machines has agreed to pay at least $479 million to compensate customers who bought the devices.

Philips Respironics and Koninklijke Philips NV, its Netherlands-based parent company, will also set aside $15 million for customers looking to replace their continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines. Documents aired Thursday show. The settlement comes more than two years after Philips recalled million of its CPAP units because foam unexpectedly spewed from the units into users’ mouths.

The company admitted no mistake in a recent blog post, adding that it already set aside $615 million earlier this year to anticipate a settlement.

“The final costs of the settlement may vary based on, among other things, how many patients participate in the settlement and what the court awards the professional fees in connection with the decisions,” the company writes in its submission.

Philips recalled its CPAP machines in 2021 and since then, the US Food and Drug Administration said it has received 105,000 complaints, including 385 reported deaths, allegedly linked to the leaking foam. The foam is deliberately placed in Philips CPAP machines to help reduce noise.

In a statement to CBS MoneyWatch, Philips said it has repaired about 4.6 million of its devices globally since the recall, including 2.5 million in the U.S.

“Patient safety and quality are our top priorities, and we want patients to feel safe when using their Philips Respironics devices,” the company said. “We have structured this settlement to rapidly deliver value to eligible patients in the United States and provide an additional measure of confidence in the safety and quality of Philips Respironics products.”

Some of the complaints to the FDA included reports linking the devices to cancer, respiratory problems, pneumonia, chest pain, dizziness and infections. FDA officials warned Americans about using Philips CPAP machines earlier this year, saying the products “can cause serious injury or death.” Inhaling the foam can cause “serious injury that may be life-threatening,” Philips wrote in its recall.

Sleep apnea patients still harmed by recall of CPAP machines in 2021


Philips tried to repair some of the machines, but the repaired ones were also recalled, FDA said. The 2021 recall was for 20 different Philips devices, including its A-Series BiPAP ventilators and the DreamStation CPAP machines.

Dozens of sleep apnea patients have filed lawsuits in recent years against Philips over the CPAP machines, but those lawsuits were consolidated in October 2022 as a class action in Pennsylvania. In many of these lawsuits, Philips customers accused the company of knowing the CPAP machines were defective but selling them anyway.

Lawyers representing CPAP users said Thursday’s settlement covers only the financial losses the customers faced, and they will seek compensation for people with personal injuries.

About 30 million people in the United States suffer from sleep apnea, a disorder in which a person’s airway becomes blocked during rest, interrupting breathing, according to 2022 data from the American Medical Association.

Although it is not yet possible to make a claim, qualified Philips customers seeking compensation from the settlement will eventually be able to do so here. In the meantime, consumers can sign up for emails to receive alerts about updates.

Anyone with questions about the settlement can email

Philips said it expects to begin paying the settlement funds in the first quarter of 2024 at the earliest.

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