December 19, 2001

Choosing a First-Line AntidepressantEqual on Average Does Not Mean Equal for Everyone

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliation: Center for Health Studies, Group Health Cooperative, Seattle, Wash.

JAMA. 2001;286(23):3003-3004. doi:10.1001/jama.286.23.3003

Patients, physicians, health insurers, and pharmaceutical manufacturers all have a considerable interest in the initial selection of an antidepressant drug. Patients and physicians hope to minimize the trial and error needed to find the treatment with the greatest benefit and the fewest risks or adverse effects. Health insurers hope to satisfy patients and insurance purchasers while minimizing drug acquisition costs. Manufacturers hope to demonstrate a unique advantage for a specific drug, either for all patients or specific subgroups of patients. Such an advantage would reduce the need to compete based on lowest price.

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