What are generic drugs?
Generic drugs are copies of branded drugs, that have the same dosage, effects, intended purpose, side effects, ways of administering, safety, strength and risks as the original drug has. Shortly, their pharmacological effects are of exact nature as their brand-name counterparts.
Some common myths
Many people often shy away from buying generic drugs because they are usually cheaper than their brand-name varieties. This is the main reason of concern for them as they have a feeling that these drugs might not be of the same nature, quality or effectiveness. As they are less expensive, the consumers feel that there might have been certain compromises to make those products. Though, the regulatory bodies have made it a mandate that these drugs should be as safe and as effective as brand-name drugs, people still hesitate to buy them.
The reason why generic drugs are cheaper is the manufacturers do not have enough money to develop and market a new drug. When a new drug is introduced into the market, the company has already spent a lot of money on research, development, promotion and marketing of the drug. The consumer gets the confidence that the medicine or the drug has been manufactured with a lot of diligence and research-based background.
When the patent for a certain drug expires, other companies can start producing the drugs at a cheaper rate and as the drug now gets sold by multiple companies, the competition makes the price come down even further.
Thus, there is no truth in the fact that generic drugs are manufactured in poor manufacturing conditions or are of inferior quality. According to recent estimates, it has been found that many well-established companies, who are into producing the brand name varieties, are also into manufacturing the generic drugs.
There is another common misbelief related to generic drugs which do the rounds. People believe that these drugs take a lot of time to start working on the ailment they are supposed to treat. Again, this is not true. Also, often generic versions of a drug have different flavors, colors or combinations of inactive ingredients. As the generic varieties, should not look the same as the branded ones, people are doubtful again. All these are nothing but myths and have no medicinal justification. The active ingredients in both kinds of preparations are common so that both of them have the same medicinal effects.
Generic drug prescription
A generic drug prescription is a prescription where the doctor can list the generic drug but will write the prescription for the brand name. If the patient is in need of generic medication then his doctor should allow for it. The pharmacist should be aware of the alternatives that are available.
Prescribed branded drugs are often available at a high price. Buying generic drug prescription products is a great way to save money. They often cost around 20 to 70% less, due to the reasons mentioned above. If the doctor is ready to write a generic alternative for the medicines, it is always better to go for them.