Recitals 31 - 40 (MDR)


(31) In view of the fact that natural or legal persons can claim compensation for damage caused by a defective device in accordance with applicable Union and national law, it is appropriate to require manufacturers to have measures in place to provide sufficient financial coverage in respect of their potential liability under Council Directive 85/374/EEC 19 . Such measures should be proportionate to the risk class, type of device and the size of the enterprise. In this context, it is also appropriate to lay down rules concerning the facilitation, by a competent authority, of the provision of information to persons who may have been injured by a defective device.


(32) To ensure that devices manufactured in series production continue to be in conformity with the requirements of this Regulation and that experience from the use of the devices they manufacture is taken into account for the production process, all manufacturers should have a quality management system and a post-market surveillance system in place which should be proportionate to the risk class and the type of the device in question. In addition, in order to minimize risks or prevent incidents related to devices, manufacturers should establish a system for risk management and a system for reporting of incidents and field safety corrective actions.


(33) The risk management system should be carefully aligned with and reflected in the clinical evaluation for the device, including the clinical risks to be addressed as part of clinical investigations, clinical evaluation and post-market clinical follow up. The risk management and clinical evaluation processes should be inter-dependent and should be regularly updated.


(34) It should be ensured that supervision and control of the manufacture of devices, and the post-market surveillance and vigilance activities concerning them, are carried out within the manufacturer's organisation by a person responsible for regulatory compliance who fulfils minimum conditions of qualification.


(35) For manufacturers who are not established in the Union, the authorised representative plays a pivotal role in ensuring the compliance of the devices produced by those manufacturers and in serving as their contact person established in the Union. Given that pivotal role, for the purposes of enforcement it is appropriate to make the authorised representative legally liable for defective devices in the event that a manufacturer established outside the Union has not complied with its general obligations. The liability of the authorised representative provided for in this Regulation is without prejudice to the provisions of Directive 85/374/EEC, and accordingly the authorised representative should be jointly and severally liable with the importer and the manufacturer. The tasks of an authorised representative should be defined in a written mandate. Considering the role of authorised representatives, the minimum requirements they should meet should be clearly defined, including the requirement of having available a person who fulfils minimum conditions of qualification which should be similar to those for a manufacturer's person responsible for regulatory compliance.


(36) To ensure legal certainty in respect of the obligations incumbent on economic operators, it is necessary to clarify when a distributor, importer or other person is to be considered the manufacturer of a device.


(37) Parallel trade in products already placed on the market is a lawful form of trade within the internal market on the basis of Article 34 TFEU subject to the limitations arising from the need for protection of health and safety and from the need for protection of intellectual property rights provided for under Article 36 TFEU. Application of the principle of parallel trade is, however, subject to different interpretations in the Member States. The conditions, in particular the requirements for relabelling and repackaging, should therefore be specified in this Regulation, taking into account the case-law of the Court of Justice 20  in other relevant sectors and existing good practice in the field of medical devices.


(38) The reprocessing and further use of single-use devices should only take place where permitted by national law and while complying with the requirements laid down in this Regulation. The reprocessor of a single-use device should be considered to be the manufacturer of the reprocessed device and should assume the obligations incumbent on manufacturers under this Regulation. Nevertheless, Member States should have the possibility of deciding that the obligations relating to reprocessing and re-use of single-use devices within a health institution or by an external reprocessor acting on its behalf may differ from the obligations on a manufacturer described in this Regulation. In principle, such divergence should only be permitted where reprocessing and reuse of single-use devices within a health institution or by an external reprocessor are compliant with CS that have been adopted, or, in the absence of such CS, with relevant harmonised standards and national provisions. The reprocessing of such devices should ensure an equivalent level of safety and performance to that of the corresponding initial single-use device.


(39) Patients who are implanted with a device should be given clear and easily accessible essential information allowing the implanted device to be identified and other relevant information about the device, including any necessary health risk warnings or precautions to be taken, for example indications as to whether or not it is compatible with certain diagnostic devices or with scanners used for security controls.


(40) Devices should, as a general rule, bear the CE marking to indicate their conformity with this Regulation so that they can move freely within the Union and be put into service in accordance with their intended purpose. Member States should not create obstacles to the placing on the market or putting into service of devices that comply with the requirements laid down in this Regulation. However, Member States should be allowed to decide whether to restrict the use of any specific type of device in relation to aspects that are not covered by this Regulation.

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