Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Russian Intellectual Property Office (Rospatent) has been developing a fast-track patent examination program for inventions related to technologies for tackling viruses and associated diseases (pneumonia).
The program covers the following fields: antiviral medicines, diagnostic tests, medical devices, vaccines, and personal protective equipment. The prosecution of such applications is prioritized and the applications can be filed without paying the official fee usually associated with the accelerated examination. Under this program, Rospatent makes the final decision on patent applications within an average of 22 days.
From April to September 2020, 340 applications were filed under the fast-track patent examination program. Five of these applications were filed by foreign applicants, while the rest were filed by Russian applicants. Around 60 patents for inventions and utility models have so far been granted, including 6 patents for a vaccine, 7 patents for drugs used in the treatment and prevention of COVID-19 and associated complications, 11 patents for diagnostic tests and methods, 26 patents for disinfecting technologies and 6 patents for personal protective equipment. There are a few Russian patents related to a vaccine against COVID-19 that have been granted regulatory approval in Russia, in particular Gam-COVID-Vac (Sputnik V) and EpiVacCorona.