Intellectual Property/Patents for Hospitals and Hospital Management

This presentation has been made by Nitin Nair. The presentation primarily deals with the importance of intellectual property protection in the hospital management sector. Besides stressing on the importance of protection, the presenter also elucidates the requirements of a successful patent grant, what is patentable subject matter and what are the necessary steps to be taken with respect to safeguarding inventions in the hospital and hospital management sector.

The presentation begins with Section 3(k) of the Patents Act, 1970 (“Patents Act” for brevity) which states that an invention which is “a mathematical or business method or a computer programme per se or algorithms” is not patentable. Section 3 of the Patents Act speaks of inventions which are not patentable. This is an important caveat for all inventors, to avoid applying for any invention which falls within this category or draft related claims which could lead to a rejection.

Further, the presenter gives various examples of industry specific invention like an electronic medical information system which can be used to segregate, accumulate and store different information like patient’s chief complaint information, the doctor’s consultation information, and then use such information to calculate and deduce certain scores. The presenter also enlightens the reader with respect to what claims in certain examples could fall under Section 3(k), which should be averted at all costs.

After taking us through various examples the presenter then states the steps to be taken to ensure maximum protection to a particular invention. For an impediment-free patent grant, one should always begin with a patent search on various data bases by using appropriate keywords to obtain best results. Then we move onto the meaning, importance and specifics of a disclosure of invention form, and what relevant information should be stated when making such disclosure.

Lastly, the presentation delves into the concept of IP harvesting. Lack of IP knowledge can be detrimental with respect to valuation and protection of intellectual property. This makes IP harvesting crucial to the hospital management sector and a proper process should be put in place in this regard. Besides having an IP harvesting process, there should also be a team of IP specialists to ensure efficient working of the IP harvesting process and facilitate IP protection.