In the wake of the COVID-19 virus, Israeli Government authorizes use of three patents for maintenance of essential supplies and services


The Israeli Government, acting through its Minister of Health with the authorization of the Attorney General of Israel, issued a precedential permit for the use of three Israeli patents covering the anti retrovirus drug "KALETRA" in order to import quantities of a generic version of the drug for use in the treatment of patients suffering from the COVID-19 virus. The drug, which is generally used for the treatment of HIV, has been found useful in the treatment of some patients suffering from the virus.

Israel's Patents Law, at sections 104-105 thereof, permits the exploitation of a patent by, or for, the Government when the Government deems that the interests of national security or the maintenance of essential supplies and services so demand. The Corona virus pandemic and ensuing public health emergency in Israel, together with information indicating that KALETRA showed potential for the treatment of the COVID-19 virus and that the patentee was not able to supply Israel with sufficient quantities of the drug, were deemed sufficient grounds under which to support the making of the Order.

This is the first time since the enactment of the Israel Patents Law in 1967 that the Government of Israel has exercised its authority under these sections. The Patents Law further provides that affected patentees are entitled to compensation for said government use, the terms of which will be determined at a later date.

While the KALETRA drug is still under patent in Israel, it is no longer under patent in many other countries, hence the availability of generic versions in those countries. Even those generic versions are in increasingly short supply around the world and the Israeli Government was of the view that it needed to act quickly to secure supplies of the dwindling stocks of the said generic version.

In the wake of the COVID-19 virus, Israeli Government authorizes use of three patents for maintenance of essential supplies and services In the wake of the COVID-19 virus, Israeli Government authorizes use of three patents for maintenance of essential supplies and services Reviewed by Neil Wilkof on Thursday, March 19, 2020 Rating: 5

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