While companies in every industry are working hard to figure out the best response to this global pandemic, those in the pharmaceutical and medical device industries have been faced with some unique challenges related to the balancing of intellectual property rights with serving the public good. One particular question that such companies might face is whether parts of their patent portfolio are connected to federal funding and if so, how the Bayh-Dole Act may come into play as the government faces increasing pressure to meet public health needs.
As the world collectively struggles to adapt to the “new normal,” it is clear that one of many challenges facing businesses and individuals is how to best adapt to supply chain disruptions. A key example of where these shortages are being reported is in the health care sector, which is experiencing a limited (or non-existent) supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) for health care workers and ventilators for patients. Not only have these shortages placed a strain on those treating patients who have fallen ill from COVID-19, but it has also frustrated efforts to fully identify who may or may not be infected. As one example, in a recent interview conducted by The Indicator podcast, it was reported that limited supplies of PPE to protect workers during patient sample collections were in turn limiting the ability of the University of Washington’s health center to test patients for coronavirus.
One doesn’t have to look beyond Facebook posts, Twitter feeds or just text messages with family members to understand how COVID-19 is transforming established norms. With bedrock industries such as air travel, hospitality, food and beverage, insurance and traditional health care, ringing the alarm, it is easy to lose track of a trend that was gently and steadily growing and effecting real and positive change—the embrace of holistic health and wellness in the workplace. Not surprisingly, many of the wellness companies leading this change rely on congregation—in-person community-building—for their growth.
March often marks a new beginning—not just by Mother Nature—but also in sports. In the U.S., March brings the excitement of the NCAA tournament, Spring Training for Major League Baseball, and the ever-tightening playoff races for the NBA.
Think COVID-19 constitutes good cause to extend imminent court deadlines? Don’t be so sure. Last Thursday, the Hon. Rodney Gilstrap, Chief Judge in the Eastern District of Texas, denied a joint motion to extend discovery cut-off and opening expert reports by 30 days in the face of COVID-19 concerns.