While providing no gain, compulsory licensing promises lots of pain. Waiving patent protection discourages cutting-edge research investments, which in turn produce breakthrough treatments not just for COVID-19, but for other diseases, like cancer. Weakening these protections would be anti-patient and counterproductive.
The reality is that, in order to save the world, we must all work together as partners. The remarkable speed with which we developed diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines to combat COVID-19 points to the need for more collaboration, not less. Patents are a foundational principle upon which that success rests.