I have intuitions that lifting patents for the approved COVID-19 vaccines would do little as the technology is a higher barrier then just licensing the patents. It feels to me like calls for opening up patents mostly come out of political reflexes without any underlying analysis of the impacts. I'm however open to updating to a more informed view if someone looked into the issue deeper. Has anyone a good grasp on the issue?

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The Russian, Chinese and some Indian vaccines do not depend on the mrna US patents. 

You could even make a vaccine in your college lab if you wish... https://radvac.org/

That's no answer to the question. 

I am not answering the question but what do you think of this?

https://www.fiercepharma.com/pharma/pfizer-eyes-higher-covid-19-vaccine-prices-after-pandemic-exec-analyst

Should Pfizer now or in the future be able to collect a 500% premium on these vaccines?

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My impression is similar to yours - those who are advocating to break the patents are doing so because they don't like patents and this is a high-profile topic to use for that agenda.  I have seen no reasoned, logical path whereby the patents are the main concern.