Is the Coronavirus Pandemic a Precursor to a Patenting Race?
It is often said that “adversity is the best precursor of innovation”, since it is in times of crisis that inventive activities (which can be patented) take the greatest impetus thus generating a large number of novel creations or improvements in different areas of human life, which seek to cope with the severe contingency that is experienced vertiginously.
Now, in this turbulent year of two thousand and twenty, a public health problem has been quickly unleashed that has the declared category of Pandemic, a case a new virus named Coronavirus SARS-Cov.2. which appeared in December 2019 in China, specifically in the city of Wuhan capital of Hubei Province, and which is responsible for the disease called COVID-19, whose most common symptoms are fever, tiredness and dry cough. However, some patients have experienced pain, nasal congestion, rhinorrhoea, sore throat or diarrhoea, starting slightly and gradually increasing, but there have also been asymptomatic cases, complicated their early detection.
This disease at the moment of low mortality and rapid spread is transmitted mainly in two ways: from person to person, due to the diffusion of particles fired by coughing and sneezing; or through eyes, nose or mouth, by being contaminated when the person touches these areas without washing or disinfecting his hands, after having touched infected objects or surfaces and still does not have a specific cure or vaccine, which has caused countries to start a race to create a “vaccine-cure” against COVID-19, which must be patented.
China, the United States, Russia and the European Union are leading the way in this race, but why such a laudable and titanic task? Does it have the sole purpose of saving the world from the clutches of this pandemic? Or can being the hero of the world have economic benefits from being patented these vaccines?
It is, of course, well known that generating novel innovations is a tough, costly and risky duty, however, if an effective result is achieved, This can provide a substantial return to those involved for a good period of time thanks to the protection granted by the patent.
But why is it so important that these vaccines are patented?
Well, the patent is an exclusive right of use and exploitation, temporary and territorial, which states on innovations recognize to inventors, companies, laboratories, societies, associations among others, to authorise or prevent their inventions from being used and exploited by third parties in a given time and territory, enabling them to earn economic income through the authorisations they grant, to have a dominant place on the market, ahead of competitors and curb unfair practices.
But to do this, inventions that are protected by means of patents must meet three essential requirements; the first is that they must be novel, that is, there must be nothing like this in the world; the second must be the product of an inventive activity, The Commission is aware of the fact that the Member States are obliged to provide a technical solution to a human need which cannot be solved easily by any expert in the field and the third is that it is possible to exploit it commercially in any branch of economic activity.
All of the above is that this Coronavirus Pandemic is the precursor of a race of patentability between countries, achieving a solution to this global public health problem in the shortest possible time symbolizes showing economic power and inventiveness, together with the possibility of marketing with its achievement in every corner of the globe for a very long time, thus transforming a crisis into a golden opportunity. Especially those that have the hallmark of being patented.
Don’t miss the opportunity to protect your invention, in Bandala | Díaz | García we provide timely and timely advice on patents.