The Federal Court of Appeal recently granted the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board's (PMPRB's) appeal and returned to the board the matter of whether the invention of the patent at hand pertained to Galderma's Differin. The court addressed several issues, including whether the PMPRB had acted unreasonably in limiting its review of the patent to selected portions.
South Africa is in the process of reviewing all existing IP laws, particularly in the context of access to medicines. It appears that the type of changes to be made in respect of the Bolar exception will relate to whether the narrow exception should be extended and, if so, to what. In particular, it is likely that an early experimental research exclusion will be included, such as for pre-clinical research. It remains to be seen whether South Africa's laws may change to allow stockpiling of generic medicines.
The Supreme Court has ruled that cannabidiol (CBD) oils containing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which originates from legally cultivated hemp constitute illegal narcotics. The court argued that since CBD oil can be defined as a preparation in accordance with the Convention on Psychotropic Substances and contains THC, it is an illegal substance. This decision is likely to affect several aspects of Swedish healthcare regulation, including that relating to medicinal products.
The Federal Court recently struck Novo Nordisk's judicial review application challenging the minster of health's decision to accept for review an abbreviated new drug submission filed by Teva Canada. In striking the application, the court concluded that Novo Nordisk had neither direct nor public interest standing in the matter.
The EU Medical Devices Regulation (MDR) entered into force in May 2017 and will fully apply from 26 May 2020. While the existing medical device regime requirements will remain, the MDR imposes additional requirements and stricter standards on medical device manufacturers and broadens the scope of product coverage. This article answers important questions relating to the new regulation.
The first half of 2019 has seen a number of changes to life sciences IP and regulatory law, including the proposed amendments to the Food and Drugs Act. In addition, the Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare released its final report, which recommends that Canada implement a universal, single-payer, public pharmacare programme by enacting new legislation and proceeding in a stepwise approach to implementation.
The Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health recently reported changes to transition Cancer Drug Implementation Advisory Committee functions to the CADTH pan-Canadian Oncology Drug Review process. Among other things, the changes aim to enhance the transparency of the pan-Canadian cancer drug review process and allow for greater stakeholder input into the development of a provisional algorithm for each new cancer drug or indication.
The Regulations Amending Certain Regulations Made Under the Food and Drugs Act (Post-market Surveillance of Medical Devices) were recently pre-published. These proposed changes were made in accordance with Vanessa's Law. The proposed regulations would implement changes to the Food and Drug Regulations and Medical Devices Regulations and (among other things) establish a regulatory framework to require assessments, tests and studies of medical devices.
Sutter Health recently filed a motion to dismiss the Department of Justice's (DOJ's) complaint in intervention in a False Claims Act suit which alleged that Sutter had knowingly submitted and caused the submission of unsupported diagnoses codes for Medicare Advantage patients in order to inflate Medicare reimbursements. Sutter's motion reflects the industry's continued resistance to the DOJ's enforcement under the False Claims Act on the basis of potentially unsupported diagnoses codes for Medicare Advantage beneficiaries, without more evidence.
When a generic is added to the Reimbursement Code, the product manufacturer or authorised distributor must reduce its price in order for the product to remain therein. If the Main Association of Social Security Institutions and the product manufacturer or authorised distributor cannot agree on a price, the product will be removed from the Reimbursement Code. A recent Supreme Court decision provides important considerations for maintaining original medicinal products in the Reimbursement Code.
The Patented Medicine Prices Review Board (PMPRB) recently published the 2018 edition of the Meds Pipeline Monitor – a horizon-scanning report which provides a snapshot of the new drug landscape. The PMPRB report considered the 733 medicines that are currently in Phase III clinical trials or pre-registration and identified 30 that have the potential to address an unmet need, offer an improvement over existing therapies and treat serious conditions.
The existing EU legislation regulating medical devices will be replaced by the Medical Devices Regulation. The new regulation changes the European legal framework for medical devices, broadens the scope of the products and operators covered under this legislation and provides for increased responsibilities and obligations for manufacturers and notified bodies. It entered into force in May 2017 and will fully apply from 26 May 2020.
The Federal Court recently dismissed Alexion's application for judicial review of a Patented Medicines Price Review Board (PMPRB) panel's decision that Soliris (eculizumab) had been sold at an excessive price and its order fixing the amount of the payment to offset excess revenues (C$4.2 million). The application was dismissed on the grounds that, among other things, the PMPRB had not been unreasonable in ordering payment of excess revenues based on the highest international price comparison.
The minister of health recently published the final report from the Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare. The council has recommended that Canada implement universal, single-payer, public pharmacare by enacting new legislation and proceeding in a stepwise approach to implementation.
Health Canada has published its Overview of the Reporting Adverse Reactions to Marketed Health Products – Guidance Document for Industry. The guidance document provides market authorisation holders with assistance on how to report adverse reactions to pharmaceutical drugs, biologics, radiopharmaceutical drugs and natural health products.
The Supreme Court of Canada has denied Apotex leave to appeal in two recent cases. In the first case, Apotex sought leave to appeal a decision of the Ontario Court of Appeal permitting Sanofi and Schering to amend their defences to claims relating to ramipril. In the second case, Apotex sought leave to appeal a decision of the Federal Court of Appeal relating to damages awarded to Eli Lilly in respect of Apotex's infringement of process patents relating to cefaclor.
In a recent opinion, the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) in the US Department of Justice concluded that an article intended to effectuate capital punishment by a state or the federal government is not subject to regulation by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. The OLC's opinion appears to have been issued as a result of litigation involving the FDA's obligation to block the entry of misbranded and unapproved drugs used under state lethal injection protocols.
Two sets of proposed amendments to the Food and Drug Regulations were recently published and contain provisions which would streamline the process for providing access to unauthorised drugs for medical emergencies. Access to the drugs will continue to be facilitated through the Special Access Programme for human drugs and the Emergency Drug Release Programme for veterinary products.
Health Canada recently released the new Guidance Document: Regulatory Requirements for Drug Identification Numbers. The document assists in interpreting the regulatory requirements associated with drug identification numbers and offers guidance to manufacturers on their obligation to accurately report notifications for a change of drug status to Health Canada.
The Patented Medicine Prices Review Board (PMPRB) previously announced that the steering committee on guidelines modernisation would hold its final meeting on 13 May 2019 to discuss both a draft report of its deliberations and the working group's final report. Once the steering committee's report has been finalised and the regulatory amendments have been published in Part II of the Canada Gazette, the PMPRB will release its draft guidelines for public consultation.