Latest updates

European Union recommends measures to be taken for use of technology and data to combat COVID-19
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • European Union
  • 23 December 2020

In April 2020 the European Commission issued Recommendation 2020/518 on establishing a common EU toolbox for the use of technology and data to combat the COVID-19 crisis, particularly with regard to mobile apps and the use of anonymised mobility data. The recommendation sets out a process to develop a common approach – a so-called 'toolbox' – in the European Union using the most innovative digital means to address the health crisis.

European Union recommends measures to be taken for use of technology and data to combat COVID-19
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • European Union
  • 18 December 2020

In April 2020 the European Commission issued Recommendation 2020/518 on establishing a common EU toolbox for the use of technology and data to combat the COVID-19 crisis, particularly with regard to mobile apps and the use of anonymised mobility data. The recommendation sets out a process to develop a common approach – a so-called 'toolbox' – in the European Union using the most innovative digital means to address the health crisis.

European Union issues communication on COVID-19 vaccination strategy
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • European Union
  • 09 December 2020

According to the European Commission, the swift development and global deployment of safe and effective vaccines against COVID-19 is key to resolving the current public health crisis. In this context, the European Commission is working to ensure Europe-wide access to safe vaccines and encouraging a coordinated vaccination strategy. Thus, in June 2020 the European Union published a communication on the EU Strategy for COVID-19 vaccines, which sets out a number of strategic objectives.

Short-term health preparedness for COVID-19 outbreaks
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • European Union
  • 25 November 2020

The European Union recently published a communication on the European Union's short-term health preparedness for COVID-19 outbreaks, which aims to reinforce the European Union's preparedness and create a coordinated response capacity to counter further outbreaks of COVID-19. This article highlights the main measures provided by the communication, including with regard to testing, contact tracing and medical countermeasures.

Latest EU measures relating to COVID-19 pandemic – multicentre clinical trials
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • European Union
  • 11 November 2020

Since COVID-19 began to spread, the majority of the world's leading pharmaceutical laboratories have begun clinical trials to find both the right vaccine and the right drug to stop it from spreading. Against this background, EU Regulation 2020/1043 aims to grant a temporary derogation from the requirements concerning a prior environmental risk assessment for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic or as long as there is a public health emergency.

Preliminary injunction issued for the issuance of European certificates of conformity for face masks under infringing sign
Grau & Angulo
  • Intellectual Property
  • European Union
  • 09 November 2020

The Alicante Commercial Court 1, acting as the European Union Trademark (EUTM) Court 1, recently granted an ex parte preliminary injunction, which had been filed by a German association for infringement of its EUTM. The court considered that the necessary requirements to adopt such exceptional measures, with effect throughout the European Union, had been met, since the defendant had used a distinctive sign similar to the plaintiff's well-known trademark to issue European conformity certificates.

European Commission's VBER review – what does it mean for franchising?
Fieldfisher LLP
  • Franchising
  • European Union
  • 15 September 2020

The EU Vertical Block Exemption Regulation will expire on 31 May 2022 and the European Commission is reviewing its effectiveness to determine whether it should lapse, its duration should be prolonged or it requires revision to take account of market developments since 2010 (most notably with regard to online sales and online platforms). This article explores the process so far and examines what this review means for franchising.

Cybersecurity in healthcare sector – Q&A on data breaches in relation to medical devices
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • European Union
  • 19 August 2020

The use of connected medical devices has changed the way in which the healthcare sector works. However, the various benefits based on the advance of connected healthcare come with an increased flow of personal data, whether in hospitals or between different market players in the healthcare industry, which has led to an increased risk of cybersecurity incidents and personal data breaches.

Intellectual property in clinical trials
  • Intellectual Property
  • European Union
  • 17 August 2020

Clinical trial results may qualify for protection as IP rights and, as such, for commercialisation in the European Union. In order for clinical trial results to be commercialised, they must be protected by the parties involved (eg, sponsors, institutions, investigators or contract research organisations). Clinical trial results may also be protected in the European Union using supplementary protection certificates, regulatory data exclusivity, orphan market exclusivity or paediatric-use marketing authorisation.

Cybersecurity in healthcare sector – Q&A on data breaches in relation to medical devices
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • European Union
  • 14 August 2020

The use of connected medical devices has changed the way in which the healthcare sector works. However, the various benefits based on the advance of connected healthcare come with an increased flow of personal data, whether in hospitals or between different market players in the healthcare industry, which has led to an increased risk of cybersecurity incidents and personal data breaches.

Intellectual property in clinical trials
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • European Union
  • 12 August 2020

Clinical trial results may qualify for protection as IP rights and, as such, for commercialisation in the European Union. In order for clinical trial results to be commercialised, they must be protected by the parties involved (eg, sponsors, institutions, investigators or contract research organisations). Clinical trial results may also be protected in the European Union using supplementary protection certificates, regulatory data exclusivity, orphan market exclusivity or paediatric-use marketing authorisation.

COVID-19: non-application of reimbursement obligations under EU Flight Delay Compensation Regulation
Augusta Abogados
  • Aviation
  • European Union
  • 15 July 2020

The spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on air traffic. The result of this once-in-a-century pandemic has been the global collapse of air travel. This has obviously led to a large number of complaints from affected passengers. This article looks at non-application of reimbursement and compensation claims under the EU Flight Delay Compensation Regulation in this context.

New EU regulation on drone operations set to take off in December 2020
Augusta Abogados
  • Aviation
  • European Union
  • 17 June 2020

The EU unmanned aircraft system (UAS) industry will face a new challenge as of 31 December 2020 when most of the EU Implementing Regulation on the rules and procedures for the operation of unmanned aircraft enters into force. The new regulation will replace most of the existing domestic provisions on UAS operations in EU member states. This will see the homogenisation of UAS-related legislation, reducing the variety of operational requirements, obligations and restrictions between EU member states.

Conducting clinical trials during COVID-19 crisis: FAQs
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • European Union
  • 20 May 2020

COVID-19 is having a significant impact on clinical trials due to its affects on EU healthcare systems, including limited or no patient contact, restricted access to trial sites and investigational medicinal product shortages. The pandemic is not only compromising effective patient treatment, it will also significantly affect ongoing and planned clinical trials, which are crucial for developing medicines and vaccines. Sponsors and investigators must therefore adapt their management of clinical trials.

Community design courts find infringement of well-known GHD hair straighteners
Grau & Angulo
  • Intellectual Property
  • European Union
  • 27 April 2020

Section 8 of the Alicante Court of Appeal, acting as the Community Design Court, recently confirmed the infringement of Jemella Limited's Community design which had previously been declared by the first-instance Community design court. The Community design in question protected the special shape of the well-known GHD IV Styler hair straightener.

How to protect against COVID-19 phishing attacks
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • European Union
  • 24 April 2020

​According to the European Union Agency for Cybersecurity, there has been a strong increase in so-called 'phishing attacks'. Cyber criminals are taking advantage of the widespread uncertainty regarding COVID-19 and are trying to gain access to confidential information. If companies or employees have been the victim of a successful phishing attack, they must immediately take protective measures to restore data security.

Does competition law allow competing researchers to collaborate on COVID-19-related R&D?
ALTIUS
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • European Union
  • 23 April 2020

New vaccines, quick and trustworthy diagnostic tests and effective medicines are key to tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. The development of these products depends on pharmaceutical companies, R&D companies, research institutes and universities. However, one question remains: what are the competition rules regarding COVID-19-related R&D?

EU postpones MDR due to COVID-19: losses and opportunities for medical device sector
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • European Union
  • 22 April 2020

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on medical device industry players (eg, manufacturers, notified bodies, suppliers, production sites and research institutions), on 25 March 2020 the European Commission announced that it intends to postpone the application date for the EU Medical Device Regulation (MDR) from May 2020 to May 2021. The European Council agreed to the MDR postponement on 7 April 2020 and the European Parliament followed suit on 17 April 2020.

COVID-19: impact on medical device industry in European Union
Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • European Union
  • 15 April 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic is having a significant impact on the medical device industry in the European Union. For instance, scientists and engineers who have been working on the new EU Medical Device Regulation framework for several years are now switching to COVID-19-related research. The pandemic has also significantly increased the demand for protective equipment such as face shields, protective mouth and nose masks, protective clothing and gloves.

Obtaining patent protection for software in Europe
GEVERS
  • Intellectual Property
  • European Union
  • 24 February 2020

Under the European Patent Convention, a computer program per se is not considered a patentable invention; rather, program listings per se are protected by copyright. However, in many cases, a computer program can be considered a technical solution to a technical problem and is thus patentable. For a European patent to be granted, applicants must show that this solution is novel and involves an inventive step with respect to prior art.