Study Shows That “Right-to-Repair” Stifles Innovation and Threatens Consumer Safety

On December 7th, the National Association of Manufacturers released a study that emphasized the implications surrounding “right to repair” within a variety of industries. Particularly, the study investigated the risks associated with bypassing manufacturers or authorized servicers, which is a consequence of supporting this type of legislation.

The paper ultimately highlights seven key points, diving into what OEMs are already providing to third-parties, threats to safety and security, impacts to intellectual property rights, and notably how these policies directly counteract many federal laws put in place to protect both manufacturers and consumers.

While the paper’s discussion was centered around the application of right to repair in the automobile industry, these high-level, significant consumer and safety concerns are also reflected in the healthcare industry. Medical devices have now evolved to become a new target for right-to-repair legislation; however, their inclusion could have life-threatening consequences for patients. Not to mention the high risks associated with granting unfettered access to complex software and components in manufactured goods, like these precision instruments.

Overall, it continues to remain crystal-clear that the risks far outweigh the benefits when it comes to right to repair legislation and medical devices, and states across the nation should use this information to better inform their upcoming legislative decisions. The decision to introduce medical devices to this risky policy will create unintended consequences that will increasingly jeopardize consumer safety.