§ DR. FARQUHARSON (Aberdeenshire, W.)
I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board whether his attention has been called to the fact that a specification for the preparation, by a German method, of remedial substances, and in particular diphtheria anti-toxin in a concentrated form, was accepted by the Patent Office on 26th January; whether such Patent will hamper the production of the serum in a concentrated form in this country for the use of public infectious and other hospitals and in the Military and Naval Hospitals; and whether it is the intention of the Government to permit such a Patent to be granted?
THE PRESIDENT OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT BOARD (Mr. SHAWLEFEVRE, Bradford, Central)
The Comptroller-General of Patents informs me 286 that a specification for a Patent, such as referred to in the question, has been lodged at his office, and that, in the absence of opposition, a Patent will be granted in the ordinary course. Whether the Patent, if granted, will be valid is a question upon which I, of course, pass no judgment. Whether such a Patent will hamper the production of serum in a concentrated form for hospital use is a point on which I cannot at present hazard an opinion; but I may remind my hon. Friend of a valuable Section in the Patents Act, 1883, which empowers the Board of Trade to order a Patentee to grant licences on reasonable terms.