Eileen Koutnik-Fotopoulos, Staff Writer
Published Online: Thursday, December 1, 2005

The Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPhA) continued its educational campaign about how generic medicines can improve patients' lives at the recent National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Family Caregiver Expo. Visitors to the GPhA booth received educational materials, including a brochure that highlighted 3 key facts on generic prescriptions:

  • For decades, generic medicines have been proven safe and effective. Generic pharmaceuticals have been used by millions of patients to treat infections, heart disease, cancer, and other medical conditions.
  • Generic drugs, like all prescription medicines, need FDA approval. The FDA requires all manufacturers and their facilities to follow specific guidelines, called Good Manufacturing Practices.
  • Generic medicines account for 53% of all prescriptions dispensed in the United States. In 2004, the average price of a branded prescription was $96.01. The average price of a prescription filled with a generic drug was $28.74—a savings of $67.27, according to data from the NACDS.

GPhA recommends that patients speak with their pharmacists and physicians about generics. The pharmacist plays an important role in explaining the benefits of generic medicines. Recent surveys indicate that when patients discuss generic medicines with their pharmacists, the majority of patients conclude that generic products provide an acceptable alternative health care option.

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