As we reported, on September 21, 2017 the Canada–European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement Implementation Act and accompanying regulations came into force. The legislation provided key reforms to the Patent Act affecting the pharmaceutical industry, including up to two years of patent term restoration for patented pharmaceuticals under the Certificate of Supplementary Protection Regulations (CSP).

The protection given under a CSP is intended to “partly compensate for time spent in research and obtaining marketing authorization.” A CSP provides “patent-like rights” that take effect after patent expiry, and is subject to the “same limitations and exceptions” as the patent. Like a patent, a CSP is subject to the jurisdiction of the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board and can be listed on the Patent Register, as well as on the CSP Register.

A year has passed since the Regulations came into force – we provide below an update on recent developments relating to CSPs.

Updated Guidance Document. On September 4, 2018, Health Canada has released an updated Guidance Document on CSPs which provides additional guidance regarding the roles and responsibilities of applicants and the Therapeutic Products Directorate (TPD) with respect to CSPs and applications, the new email address for corresponding with the TPD, and an explanation of how the TPD calculates the CSP term.

“Timely submission requirement” decreases to one year.  To be CSP-eligible, the Canadian NDS for the drug in question must be filed within 24 months of any first international drug submission filing for the same drug in the European Union, United States, Australia, Switzerland or Japan. For CSP applications submitted on or after September 22, 2018 this period decreases from 24 months to 12 months. A new CSP application form that provides for the one year period is available, intended for use on or after September 22, 2018.

To date, a total of 14 CSPs have been issued and three have been refused. On August 31, 2018, the first application challenging the Minister’s decision to refuse a CSP was commenced in Federal Court (Federal Court File number T-1603-18).