Waiving intellectual property rights: boom or bust for medical innovation?

Source: Photo by Nataliya Vaitkevich by Pexels
Tuesday, November 23, 2021 - 10:45

Should we waive intellectual property rights to fight COVID-19? And what might be the consequences for medical innovation if we do so? In his recently published Feature in Drug Discovery Today on “Waiving intellectual property rights: boom or bust for medical innovation?”, Dr Bastian Rake reflects on the consequences of waiving intellectual property rights for innovative entrepreneurial companies, the incentives to innovate, and the consequences for international knowledge flows to low- and middle-income countries. Dr Rake concludes that waiving intellectual property rights – such as patents – reduces opportunities for young, entrepreneurial companies to attract sufficient funding for developing medical innovations. Moreover, low- and middle-income countries might suffer reduced knowledge inflows in the absence of intellectual property rights which undermines ability the of these countries to develop medical innovations.  Link to publication