Bruce Friedman and I have informally discussed a disturbing problem in health informatics: the insinuation of intellectual property (via licenses and patents) into healthcare data standards. This issue also arose during my digital imaging
presentation, February 6, at CaBIG.
Industry and government agree that we need to have standard ways of describing, organizing, and exchanging data. In the U.S., there are thousands of standards development organizations (SDOs) busily creating new standards and revising existing standards. In the healthcare industry, it is likely that a small number of standards will emerge as the "big winners" in this evolutionary struggle. A great deal of money will be invested in the development of software and other implementing technologies for those standards that are recommended or required by the U.S. Government.
Unfortunately, the implementation of standards in commercial systems (even standards that have been recommended or required by the government) may put commercial entities at some legal risk.
--The standard may contain methods that are covered by existing
--The standard may itself be "owned" by entities that exert a license.
--The uses of the standard (not the standard itself) may be patented.
I will be writing a series of blogs over the next few weeks that discuss problematic IP issues related to biomedical standards.
Next blog in the series
My book, Principles of Big Data: Preparing, Sharing, and Analyzing Complex Information was published in 2013 by Morgan Kaufmann.
I urge you to explore my book. Google books has prepared a generous preview of the book contents.
Jules J. Berman, Ph.D., M.D.
tags: big data, metadata, data preparation, data analytics, data repurposing, datamining, data mining, intellectual property, patents, standards