Technomed v Bluecrest Health Screening [2017] EWHC 2142 (Ch)

24 August 2017

Jonathan Hill successfully represented the claimants (“Technomed”) in this claim for infringement of sui generis database right and various copyrights by the defendants (“Bluecrest” and “Express”).

Bluecrest had entered a contract with Technomed for the provision of heart screening services, using Technomed’s Electrocardiogram (ECG) analysis and reporting system (known as the ECG Cloud). This was a system which enabled patient ECGs to be remotely analysed and risk-stratified and generated standard form reports explaining the analysis to patients and their GPs. Subsequently Bluecrest had entered a contract with Express to provide similar heart screening services. Technomed claimed that the analysis and reports supplied by Express infringed database right and copyright subsisting in the collection of cardiac conditions and categorisations underlying ECG Cloud and copyright in explanatory text and diagrams used in the reports generated by ECG Cloud as well as in the XML format used to transmit the contents of those reports.

Giving judgment for Technomed, the judge (David Stone) found that the rights contended for by Technomed did indeed subsist. In order to produce the Express reports the defendants had copied a pdf version of the collection of information underlying ECG Cloud, and as a result had infringed both Technomed’s database right and copyright in its database. Furthermore, the defendants had infringed Technomed’s copyright in both the literary and artistic content used in the reports, as well as the XML format, by using these in their own reports. The judge also found that the use of the literary and artistic content was a flagrant breach of Technomed’s copyright for the purposes of any subsequent claim for additional damages.

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