The reports of dying innovation in the U.S. have been greatly exaggerated if the number of patents granted is taken as the pulse of that innovation.
The Patent and Trademark Office granted 300,678 patents last year, up 8 percent from 2013, according to a new report from the Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO), which lists the top 300 organizations in terms of patents granted.
Judging by that list, innovation is very much alive and well in the medical technology industry. The list includes 21 drug- and device-makers, as well as a number of universities, institutes and conglomerates that conduct R&D related to prescription drugs, diagnostics or medical devices in addition to products in other fields.
For instance, General Electric Co., which ranked No. 10 in terms of patents granted, develops imaging equipment, nuclear medicine and other health care products, plus consumer appliances and electronics, lighting, power