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News article1 April 2021Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises1 min read

EPO Patent Index 2020: Healthcare Innovation Drives Patent Applications

Statistics recently published by the European Patent Office (EPO) show that innovation in healthcare drove patenting activity in 2020: Medical technology was the leading field for inventions in terms of volume, while pharmaceuticals and biotechnology were the fastest-growing areas.

After a year of global pandemic, a large number of sectors has been heavily affected by the different countermeasures adopted across the globe. Nevertheless, EPO's Patent Index for 2020 shows that the demand for patent protection has remained high: the total number of patents filed in 2020 was nearly on a par with the previous year's, only decreasing by 0.7%.

Being aware that this year’s results are far from presenting a full picture of the long-term effects of the pandemic, it has been observed how life sciences and digital technologies are currently the main drivers in the patent application landscape.

Read EPO's full statement and download the Patent Index 2020 on the EPO’s website.


Publication date
1 April 2021
Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises