Welcome to the third episode in our series about what it takes to get from an idea to a new medical device. We started the series recommending you consider how invested you are in your medtech idea and then get input to find out if your idea really fulfills an unmet clinical need. In the third part of our series, we discuss the practical measures that need to be taken in order to protect your intellectual property from the beginning.
Our best advice for protecting your medical device ideas? Stop talking about them.
Medical practitioners are passionate people, and we love that about you! We understand that you’re especially passionate when it comes to your own ideas for medical devices. Sharing your passion and your ideas with others in your field can seem like a harmless activity or even an effective way to get feedback on them, but this can put your ideas in danger of being stolen.
Putting protective measures into place, such as a provisional patent or a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), is essential in securing your intellectual property.
While a patent is a federal document that defines your medical device idea as your own, an NDA is described as a “pinky promise” between you and whomever you’re discussing your idea with. NDAs ensure that someone cannot take your idea, create their own medical device around it, and get all of the intellectual property (IP) for that idea. That being said, there is no one who can monitor or safeguard your intellectual property except you. If you have had someone sign an NDA and then they make their own medical device using your idea, you are responsible for confronting them about it and getting lawyers involved if necessary.
Dr. Emily Blum, Kelley Bennett, Sarah Cohen and Dersi Patel further explore what it takes to keep your medical device ideas protected in the video below.
Stay tuned for the next videos in this series as they continue to discuss the process that physicians must go through when developing a new medical device, and the team that it takes to do it.
If you are a potential physician innovator with an idea for a new medical device and want to learn more about what it takes to bring that idea to life, visit our website, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out this form.