This report provides a technical analysis of the patent landscape and current development of Health Information Technology (HIT) and health diagnostics across Europe, UK, and USA. It considers the commercial and legal strengths of the patent portfolios of leading organisations within the field. The analysis of the landscape is achieved by mapping the overall field of Healthcare IT within target markets using proprietary analytical and secondary research tools.
This report has been produced by Mr Jesse Boamah whilst studying at Coller IP, as a formal contribution towards his PhD studies at the Centre for Doctoral Training in Healthcare Innovation at the University of Oxford.
In today’s competitive environment, knowing and understanding the marketplace is proving to be very essential. To succeed in emerging markets, healthcare firms are required to evolve quickly in a fast-paced demanding healthcare environment. The drive for investment in Health IT is, particularly, a suitable solution due to the promise of quality and efficiency gains. Technological advances and national initiatives (e.g. the NHS National Programme for IT) to reduce costs have also spurred advances in healthcare informatics by adopting an ongoing support for information systems. These efforts aim to standardize nomenclature, formats and communication protocols; thus enhancing interoperability and overcoming problems of fragmentation. Wide applications of health information systems to improve patient care include Electronic Health Records and Computerised Provider Order Entry. Also imaging applications such as Picture Archiving and Communications Systems have helped in improving workflow in hospitals.
As technical developments are made, there are parallel increases in the number of patents being filed to protect the underlying inventions. Information based on patent landscaping can provide a useful insight to support decision-making. As well as providing market intelligence for healthcare firms, it helps in understanding and considering the hotspots of developments, improving formulation of patenting strategy, and identifying key suppliers and partnerships for further technological development.
- Significant advances are being made in increasing efficiency through novel information technologies, component design enhancements and other advances in integrating communication systems.
- Increased patenting activity and patent rights in Health IT can be attributed to a move towards remote care to reduce stays in hospitals, and encourage self-monitoring.
- The subsets of patenting in Health IT are relatively small, compared to other industries, and suggest that significant opportunity for further development and growth remains.
- There is a predominance of patenting activities in theUnited States of America.
- Active patenting has been carried out mainly by big firms such as Philips (The Netherlands), Siemens (Germany), GE Healthcare (USA), and Medtronic (USA).
- High patenting activity is seen in patient diagnostics and monitoring. Abbott Diabetes Care has significant concentrations of patents in glucose and insulin monitoring devices.
- Patenting activity in Health IT includes developments in miniature functional recording, light emitting technologies and image diagnostics that are on the increase.
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