As part of the Healing Innovation blog, we have been reaching out to physician inventors to learn how we can assist them in our tutorials and postings, connecting them with resources, as well as assessing their identified medical needs. In the process, we are realizing that many clinical innovators are more naïve than expected and don’t fully absorb the level of effort required to license a medical device idea to industry, never mind develop a medical device oneself. Read More
In the medical device innovation space, like other industries, there are many dreamers and much fewer doers. I have previously postulated that one of the key reasons doctors never get out of the starting blocks on their medical device ideas is fear of someone stealing their idea. Whatever the reason, there is inertia working against taking the first step in the inventive process. Read More
It seems self-evident to me that when you put an innovative physician and a creative engineer in a room together, sparks will fly, and compelling solutions to medical needs will emerge. That is if the two collaborators trust each other and understand their different approaches to problem solving. Read More
A year ago we wrote about hospital systems starting to take greater ownership of physician inventions, with intellectual property rights now defined in employment agreements, even for non-research hospitals. A recent legal case has further cemented the constraints for innovative physicians. Read More
As a physician inventor, you likely don’t have the time or business interest in starting an “operational” company that sells medical devices. You have a great idea. You want to demonstrate its effectiveness and then find an established company to market and distribute the product. The challenge is that pre-revenue acquisitions or licensing (i.e. products that are not yet marketed) have become a small niche in the medical device industry. Read More
When most people think of novelty items, they are envisioning the trinkets you buy at a party store for a gag birthday gift. But, medical device intellectual property is no laughing matter. In patent parlance, novelty refers to whether an invention is unknown or not used before being filed with the patent office, and is non-obvious. Patent law experts can provide a better legal description of novelty than myself, but from a practical standpoint, I’m more interested in helping doctors gain preliminary insight into the novelty of their ideas? Read More
All participants in medical device product development understand that physician involvement in the process leads to better healthcare. I have argued in the past for an even more active physician role in the early stages of medical device concept development. Patient rights groups, however, worry about conflicts of interest. The conflicts of interest are not the result of participating in the development process, but reflect the hazards of medtech promotional practices. Read More
Researchers at universities, similar to employees of medical device companies, are accustomed to assigning patent rights to their institution in an employment agreement signed during the hiring process. What may not be as obvious is that many non-academic hospitals are now including intellectual property (IP) rights in their physician employment agreements. Read More
1. Commit to every day asking yourself whether the procedures or medical steps you are performing could be done faster, cheaper, or better.
2. Buy a bound (non-spiral) composition notebook for documenting the year 2011 observed clinical needs, ideas, and interactions with others on ideas.
Physicians are clearly the primary clinical innovators due to their education, experience, and specialization. That said, a broad spectrum of non-physician clinicians (e.g. nurses, surgical technologists, surgical assistants, etc.) have the capacity to find inventive solutions to their clinical challenges. Read More