Role of Intellectual Property Amidst Covid-19 and Methods to Spur Innovation during Pandemic

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Intellectual Property Rights
Understanding of Intellectual Property Rights, helps in understanding of how patents and copyrights work. When creating any new intellectual material, knowing and understanding of these property rights is important. With the onset of the Corona Virus, all aspects of our everyday lives have been impacted. There have been a lot of changes that have found their way within our daily workings to help ease the fight against this pandemic. Like with most things, the virus has managed to bring into perspective certain ideas and discussions regarding intellectual property rights as well.

On 26th April 2020, the world celebrated World Intellectual Property Day. On this occasion, Dr. David Nabarro, an envoy to WHO on COVID-19, sent out a video message that brought focus on the importance of strengthening and bettering intellectual property rights. This is particularly important when it is thought about in the context of medical supplies which are essential. The strengthening of Intellectual Property Rights poses as an advantage when trying to combat problems of counterfeit medical supplies such as face mask, medical equipment and unfortunately, even medication.

Along with the need to strengthen and re-evaluate intellectual property rights during the time of the COVID-19 through a medical point of view, there are other industries as well for which this is essential. The Corona has, without a doubt led to economies taking a hit around the world. A lot of companies have been struggling due to the situation of the pandemic. Now is a crucial time for these companies to re-think the manner in which they run. To fit within the situation, a lot of companies try to take ideas from fields and companies which are thriving during the pandemic. Namely, the medical industry and certain parts of the entertainment industry. Given the kind of competition companies are faced with, they are always trying to one-up their competitors. At such a time, protection of property rights becomes all the more important. If the laws around property rights are too lax and do not account for the increased need of companies to re-vamp their services, there is a risk of companies stealing ideas from their competitors or directly from industries which are thriving at this time.

Having better and stronger Intellectual Property laws in place pose as an advantage for both the companies themselves, and reduce the number of IP litigations that may occur. During this time, a lot of countries have made a move towards re-visiting their IP laws.

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