The doctrine of equivalents in the medtech arena


Christopher Bright and Nathan Smith

The doctrine of equivalents in the medtech arena

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The role of the doctrine of equivalents in assessing the value of, and risks associated with, medtech patents is often overlooked. Christopher Bright and Nathan Smith of Morgan Lewis report.

Medtech—and its resultant impact on global healthcare—could not be more urgently needed than now. Benefiting from the convergence of medical and technological advances, medtech promises not only new medical devices, diagnostics and treatments, but also new channels for more effectively delivering healthcare, all with better outcomes.

But the promise of medtech can be realised only if there is sufficient incentive to develop medtech, which requires a clear understanding of the extent of the exclusivity and value of the medtech patent portfolio landscape. 

To gain that clear understanding medtech innovators assessing the value of their patent portfolios, and medtech implementers assessing their patent infringement risk, must consider the role that the Doctrine of Equivalents (DoE) plays in assessing medtech patents in the US.

Medtech, patent portfolio, Morgan Lewis, healthcare, innovator, DoE, US Supreme Court, medical devices, software, telecoms, technology, IoT, automotive