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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published online by De Gruyter June 21, 2022

Attempting to Mitigate COVID-19: Does the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act Provide Patent Infringement Immunity?

Samuel E. Higgs


This article analyzes various legal defenses and immunities against patent infringement liability during COVID-19 under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (“PREPA” or “Act”). Although initially enacted in response to the 2001 Anthrax attacks, PREPA was once again invoked in response to COVID-19 under the authority of the Secretary of Health and Human Services (the “Secretary”). Through declarations issued by the Secretary, the scope of the original Act inferably expanded in a pursuit to mitigate the public health emergency of COVID-19. The nature of this review primarily focuses on the uncertainties surrounding the extent and practical legal applications of this expansion.

Corresponding author: Samuel E. Higgs, Texas Tech University School of Law, Lubbock, Texas, USA, E-mail:

Published Online: 2022-06-21

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