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MDMA Statement on Senate Hearing on the "PATENT Act"

Thursday, May 7, 2015  
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MDMA Statement on Senate Hearing on the “PATENT Act”

Washington, D.C. – Mark Leahey, President and CEO of the Medical Device Manufacturers Association (MDMA), issued the following statement today regarding the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing entitled “S. 1137, the ‘PATENT Act’ – Finding Effective Solutions to Address Abusive Patent Practices:”

“MDMA thanks the Senate Judiciary Committee for holding this important hearing, and for taking a more targeted approach to address the limited but real abuses in the patent system.

 “The ultimate goal of policy makers is to strike the right balance between putting an end to abusive practices, while strengthening the rights of true patent holders to protect their intellectual property.  The ‘PATENT Act’ is a step in the right direction, and addresses some of the flaws that exist in legislation currently before the House of Representatives.

 “MDMA remains concerned, however, that the ‘PATENT Act’ would weaken the ability of small, entrepreneurial companies to defend their discoveries against infringement.  MDMA believes some of the fundamental changes should include maintaining the ‘reasonably could have raised’ estoppel for post-grant review, narrowing the definition of ‘end-user’ to avoid staying direct infringers from patent suits, and not exposing legitimate investors to new financial liabilities.

“MDMA will continue to work with the Senate Judiciary Committee to help produce a bill that allows medical technology entrepreneurs to innovate and improve patient care.  The worst outcome for America is if Congress approves legislation that is intended to target patent ‘trolls’ but ultimately weakens the innovation ecosystem that has made the U.S. economy the envy of the world.

“MDMA is committed to ensure that any legislation to address patent ‘trolls’ is targeted and does not have the unintended consequences of weakening one's patent rights.”