Fast Five Quiz: Generic Medications

Mary L. Windle, PharmD


November 22, 2019

Research has shown that the lower out-of-pocket costs of generic medications are associated with higher patient adherence, which ultimately leads to lower downstream healthcare costs for chronic conditions. For this and other reasons, the American College of Physicians (ACP) recommends that clinicians prescribe a generic medication over a brand-name medication whenever possible, noting that most generic drugs are as effective as their brand-name counterparts. The ACP further suggests that clinicians prescribe brand-name medications only if generic alternatives prove clinically unsuccessful.

Although generic medications usually cost less than brand-name medications, a recent study by Dusetzina and colleagues showed that this is not always the case—particularly for some high-priced specialty drugs.

As previously discussed, patient adherence is not the same regardless of drug branding status. Adherence is not lower for patients taking generic medications than branded medications due to a higher rate of adverse events associated with generic drugs.

Learn more about generic drugs and patient adherence.


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