Product liability considerations are not likely the first concerns that spring to mind for the many companies working to develop digital health countermeasures and other products related to COVID-19. Yet even while putting together solutions on an accelerated timeline, there are some straightforward actions that companies can take that may reduce litigation risk down the
On 19 February 2020, the European Commission presented its long-awaited strategies for data and AI. These follow Commission President Ursula von der Leyen’s commitment upon taking office to put forward legislative proposals for a “coordinated European approach to the human and ethical implications of AI” within the new Commission’s first 100 days. Although the papers published this week do not set out a comprehensive EU legal framework for AI, they do give a clear indication of the Commission’s key priorities and anticipated next steps.
The Commission strategies are set out in four separate papers—two on AI, and one each on Europe’s digital future and the data economy. Read together, it is clear that the Commission seeks to position the EU as a digital leader, both in terms of trustworthy AI and the wider data economy.
In this bonus edition of our checkup series, Covington’s global cross-practice Digital Health team considers some additional key questions about product liability and insurance coverage that companies across the life sciences and technology sectors should be asking as they seek to fit together the regulatory and commercial pieces of the complex digital health puzzle.
1. What are the key questions when crafting warnings and disclosures?
If your product is regulated, your warnings and disclosures will need to comply with any relevant regulations. In the case of a product not regulated by the FDA or equivalent regulatory body, first consider how your warnings and disclosures will be incorporated into the use of the product.
Some disclosures, like an explanation of the data source used by software, may fit best in terms and conditions that a user sees before using the product. Key warnings, however, may be more appropriately placed as part of the user experience.
Example: A warning that patients should consult their doctors if necessary may need to be placed in proximity to specific medical content.
Best Practice: Consider your intended audience: are you writing warnings for doctors, patients, or institutions? The appropriate types of disclosures will vary across populations. Patient-directed warnings may also need to be written in simplified language.
Best Practice: Consider whether it is appropriate for your product to have users to accept or otherwise be required to agree to the warnings and disclosures.