Federal government undermines COVID-19 vaccine development

Canada’s amended Patent Act weakens protections for intellectual property in the life sciences just when rights are vital for mobilizing a rapid response

Federal government undermines COVID-19 vaccine developmentFirst, the good news: Symvivo Corp., a Canadian company, has a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidate in phase one trials. The bad news is that the federal government is dismantling the incentives to find a vaccine. In the battle against the global pandemic, public- and private-sector actors both have essential roles to play. Governments are collecting data,…

USMCA will stunt potentially lifesaving innovation

The new trade agreement represents progress for international trade, but crucially, it weakens protections for the biopharma industry

USMCA will stunt potentially lifesaving innovationIn December, the United States, Mexico and Canada signed a new trade agreement (USMCA) in Mexico City. The agreement represents progress for international trade, but crucially, it weakens protections for the biopharma industry, as the final version of the deal removed provisions that would have extended the exclusivity (essentially, the period of time when brand-name…

National pharmacare can hurt patients more than it helps

Will likely result in reduced access to new drugs, and delay research and development

National pharmacare can hurt patients more than it helpsThe federal government’s pharmacare advisory council released a report last week outlining the “foundational” elements of a national plan. And Tuesday’s federal budget may include more details. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding regarding core aspects of the pharmacare debate. Given that proponents in Canada often cite government-funded pharmacare programs in the United…

Inadequate intellectual property rights protections hurt patients, economy

Provide biopharmaceutical firms with patent term extensions to recover time lost due to mandatory governmental regulatory and marketing approvals

Inadequate intellectual property rights protections hurt patients, economyAs the old adage states, “You’ll be known by the company you keep.” As such, the implications for Canada’s biopharmaceutical sector are rather dismal. While an extensive body of evidence demonstrates that patents and other intellectual property protections are critical to the future of innovation and the development of new treatments and cures, Canadian legislation…

Stronger IP protection for biologic medicine could save lives

Biologic medicines are difficult and expensive to develop, and Canadia's weak intellectual property protections are making it even harder

Stronger IP protection for biologic medicine could save livesBiologic medicines save lives and improve the quality of life for millions of people. To date, almost 200 biologic medicines have been brought to market. It’s projected that by 2017 biologics could comprise seven of the top 10 global pharmaceuticals and account for up to 30 per cent of pharmaceuticals under development. That’s great news…