3D printing is providing physicians with a steady flow of new options for medical treatment. Reports are constantly emerging about novel, life-saving procedures made possible through 3D printing. As one might imagine, however, 3D printing a medical device for use in humans carries particular challenges not present with 3D printing in other contexts.… Continue Reading
The bipartisan leadership of the House Energy and Commerce Committee has released their 2015 version of the 21st Century Cures Act, which is intended to bolster medical discovery, treatment development and delivery of treatment to patients. The nearly 200-page legislation is the product of a year-long collaboration between lawmakers and stakeholders.… Continue Reading
Over on the Drug & Device Law blog, Reed Smith partner Jim Beck (aka "Bexis") offers his thoughts on the possible product liability implications of printing 3D medical devices. Specifically, Jim examines the question of what party (or parties) would be held liable as the manufacturer in a product liability case involving 3D printing. There are uncertainties surrounding each of the three primary parties who may be considered for liability: the hospital that owns the 3D printer used to produce medical devices; the manufacturer of the 3D printer; or the designer of the software used by the 3D printer to create the products. Jim's post discusses the current issues around naming each of those parties as the manufacturer, and concludes that - at least for the time being - 3D printing presents an unusual situation in which it is feasible that no entity qualifies as a "manufacturer" under the Restatements for strict liability. Additional legal issues like this will likely emerge as 3D printing's popularity continues to increase.… Continue Reading
As mentioned on our Health Industry Washington Watch blog, committees in both the House of Representatives and Senate last week addressed the speed at which medical innovations are approved and available for patient use. The House Energy and Commerce Committee’s “21st Century Cures Act” discussion draft, released on January 27, 2015, is a wide-reaching bill … Continue Reading
The January 25, 2015 edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette featured an article in which Reed Smith partner Chris Healy commented on the dramatic rise in popularity of 3D printing technology and the legal issues that have come about – and may arise in the future – as a result of this trend. The article, “3D … Continue Reading
The past few years have seen 3D printing – a process that involves the creation of a three-dimensional object from a pre-conceived design – evolve from a futuristic idea into a multi-billion dollar business, and few industries have benefitted more from this technology than life sciences and health care. 3D printing has been used to … Continue Reading
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) just announced that, as part of its implementation of the recently released National Broadband Plan and the Plan's recommendation to use the power of broadband to improve healthcare, the FCC and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are going to be holding a public meeting on July 26 and 27, 2010, to discuss regulatory issues arising from the convergence of wireless technology and healthcare devices. The meeting is formally entitled: "Enabling the Convergence of Communications and Medical Systems: Ways to Update Regulatory and Information Processes." The purpose of this meeting is, among other things, to discuss ways to promote investment and innovation in health technology by streamlining government processes.
To help develop an agenda for this important meeting, the FDA and the FCC are seeking input from, among others, the medical and device manufacturing industries, practitioners, and other stakeholders and users of medical technology on a number of questions regarding regulatory challenges and safety of patients and other users of medical devices that include radio elements and of systems that can be tied into broadband communications networks.… Continue Reading