Francis Gurry, the Director General of World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and Thomas Cueni, DG of the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA) have recently signed an agreement named “Pat-INFORMED” to uplift information generation system in the medical field using gateways. It will offer new tools and resources to determine the existence of patents relevant to products sought by procurement bodies’ disease-management strategies.
While patent information is readily available, resources that directly link granted patents to marketed medicines are currently only limited to certain countries (e.g. the USA’s ‘Orange Book’) or available through private third-party databases.
For successive information conveyance, a database is created. This database will be beneficial for the citizens, allowing them to directly connect with the medical practitioners in order to solve their problem. Currently, twenty research-based biopharmaceutical companies have made information accessible through the database.
“Pat-INFORMED will make it easier for procurement experts to assess the patent status of medicines, underlining how a well-designed and implemented patent system incentivizes innovation while making available and accessible key information about patented inventions,” says Gurry.
“We can proudly say that this collaboration with WIPO shows the private sector’s initiative to propose practical solutions to reduce the complexity around patent information. Helping ease access to patent information for public health authorities can help them establish smarter procurement strategies, one building block of improved global health,” adds Cueni.
In addition to the database, participants have committed to respond in good faith to a procurement agency’s bonafide and reasonable requests for additional patent information related to a product of interest.
The online operations are speculated to be functional from mid-2018. Indeed, it will provide patent information for small molecule products within oncology; hepatitis C, cardiovascular, HIV, diabetes, and respiratory therapy areas and any products on the WHO Essential Medicines List which are not within the therapy areas.
For the second phase, the program is expected to expand to cover all therapeutic areas and explore the inclusion of complex therapeutics.