Medicare’s Failure to Track Doctors Wastes Billions on Name-Brand Drugs

If the US forced

If the US forced pharmaceutical developers to share their formulae with generics manufacturers after one year in return for adherence to formulae and a share of the profits, this might not be an issue. This is how pharmaceutical law works in Canada, resulting in generics being within five percent of name brand formulae.

Maybe governments should be

Maybe governments should be targeting doctors in order to save money.

Regardless of what my doctor writes on the prescription pad my pharmacy gives me the generic version. I have asked them about it and found it presumptuous on their part to make that decision without asking my doctor or me. Sometimes they do ask if I want the generic version, but rarely, they usually just give it to me.

This article fails to explore

This article fails to explore the possible reasons for WHY these doctors might be prescribing so many medications. Some are probably working in good faith. Perhaps they work on the cutting edge of medicine. Perhaps they are the only ones who treat a condition that has only recently become treatable. Or perhaps as in the case of the one and only physician profiled, they have some sort of bias against generics.

I've read all about how generics are "just as good" as name brands, and its just not true. Most of the time they work well enough but they are seldom "just as good".

You can't just look at the numbers and say, "oh wow, we got a problem here!". You gotta look deeper.

Katherine wrote: I've read

Katherine wrote:

I've read all about how generics are "just as good" as name brands, and its just not true. Most of the time they work well enough but they are seldom "just as good".

That's why the patent law in Canada specifies that the generic product must be within 5% of forumulae, which represents the manufacturers' deviation. There is virtually no difference between the two at that level of quality control. In the US, however, the requirement is only that they are within 20% of formulae, thus not as good.

While the article mainly

While the article mainly focused on one particular physician as an example, it did state that only a tiny fraction of the 1.6 million analyzed had prescribing habits that would be considered wasteful. That small number of physicians had a huge impact.

Maybe they are prescribing name brands, because they don’t think generics are as good; especially, with the elderly who are often on numerous medications, but many of those physicians also accepted thousands of dollars in promotional or consulting fees from drug companies.

I find that a tad bit suspicious and something that should be looked into.

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