zimmytws / Shutterstock.com
Pressure is building on IP owners to offer up access to technology that could help fight COVID-19. Rory O'Neill looks at some of the implications for the patent system.
Health systems on almost every continent are threatened with being overrun by COVID-19, and face acute shortages of essential, life-saving equipment. Governments have responded with a call to arms, taking steps to facilitate the mass production of ventilators in an effort to up the capacity of intensive care units.
Those working in IP have quickly spotted the potential for patent rights to be an obstacle to this retooling effort. Governments and civil society have recognised this too, and several different remedies have been proposed in order to ensure that IP is not an impediment to the world’s COVID-19 response.
One approach that has gained traction in recent weeks is patent pools. Pressure is now building on companies with IP that could be valuable to voluntarily license it, on an open-access basis.
To continue reading this article and to access our full archive, digital magazines and special reports you will need a subscription.
If you have already subscribed please login.
For multi-user price options, or to check if your company has an existing subscription we can add you into, please email Atif at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have any technical issues please email tech support.
For access to the complete website and archive choose '12 MONTH SUBSCRIPTION'. For a free, two-week trial select ‘TWO WEEK FREE TRIAL’.
Patent pools, COVID-19, coronavirus, pledge, Costa Rica, Frank Tietze, WHO, WIPO, Francis Gurry, IP, patents