Brand VS Generic Drugs

Product Name Brand Drugs Generic Drugs

Under the term of BRAND NAME is understood a name given to a medication by the pharmaceutical company that developed and manufactured it. It can also be called the "proprietary name".

Brand medications are developed by a pharmaceutical company; they are tested and proved to be effective in process. They are also very expensive.

It costs a lot to a company to bring a new medication to the pharmaceutical market; the process of development, manufacturing, testing, marketing and promotion takes time, effort and a great deal of expenses on the part of a company.

As a result, a company gets a patent for the particular drug manufacturing and it actually means that this company has got an exclusive right to sell the drug and gain profit. An average patent term is 20 years; after this period it expires and a company loses its exclusive right.

As a result, other companies get a chance to sell generic versions of a drug (as long as they get approval).

Present-day statistics shows that: 48% of Americans use at least one prescription medication annually; 21% - have got 3 prescriptions; 11% - have more than 5 prescriptions that they have to fill on a regular basis.

Besides, Americans pay ways more for their prescription medications than patients for the same drugs in other countries.

Taking these facts into consideration there is no surprise that many patients prefer generic drug variations to their brand counterparts.

Under the term of GENERIC NAME is understood the name of the medication that is given to it in accordance with its main ingredient. It is granted to a drug in the result of an expert committee discussion and is internationally understood and accepted. It can also be referred to as the "non-proprietary name".

Generic drugs must be identical to their brand name counterpart (in other words they have to be bioequivalent).

They should be identical in the form and dosage as well as all characteristics that refer to a medicine's performance, effects as well as side-effects. The drug should have the same chemical content and the same active and inactive ingredients. They should have the same uses and indications as brand-name drugs and they must be manufactured in accordance with the same standards the FDA sets for all drugs.

Generic drugs can be sold by other companies provided that the patent for a certain medication has expired. Various manufacturers are able to apply for FDA approval; and once granted, they are able to start selling their generic variations.

Due to the fact that manufacturing process of a generic medication is easier (there are no development, testing and promotion stages and so on - in other words, they haven't had any of the startup costs and expenses that all new products incur), the end result is cheaper.

Generic drug manufactures are able to offer their customers the product that has all the same ingredients and effects as a well-known brand drug; and they do not need to make it expensive. Moreover, it has no need in promotion either.

When the market fills with a number of such manufacturers, it leads to further decrease in prices as multiple offers cause competition and it is definitely a good thing for a customer.