Geneva, Switzerland – Patients in low-and middle-income countries, who often buy medicines out-of-pocket at private pharmacies and drugs stores, could save substantially if they switched from originator brands to lower-cost generics. In these countries, originator brand medicines often cost several times more than their generic equivalents.
A recent study, “Switching From Originator Brand Medicines To Generic Equivalents In Selected Developing Countries: How Much Could Be Saved?,” published in Value in Health, estimates the potential savings of switching medicine purchases from originator brands to generics for a selection of off-patent products in the private sector.
Across the countries studied, it was found that an average of 60% of could be saved. Medicines can therefore be made more affordable through greater use of quality assured, lower-cost generics.
Governments should promote the use of generics as a means of improving access to medicines and realizing the objectives laid out in their national medicines policy.
Dr. Kees de Joncheere, Director of the Department of Essential Medicines and Pharmaceutical Policies at the World Health Organization, notes that, “In low- and middle-income countries, promoting the use of generic medicines for off-patent products is an important strategy for improving access to medicines.”
Value in Health (ISSN 1098-3015) publishes papers, concepts, and ideas that advance the field of pharmacoeconomics and outcomes research as well as policy papers to help health care leaders make evidence-based decisions. The journal is published bi-monthly and has over 8,000 subscribers (clinicians, decision makers, and researchers worldwide).
International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR) is a nonprofit, international, educational and scientific organization that strives to increase the efficiency, effectiveness, and fairness of health care resource use to improve health.
For more information: www.ispor.org