Contrary to a widely accepted view, generic prescribing will not lead to the lowest-cost equivalent therapy. An examination of the price structure of the oral penicillins reveals that generic prescribing may lead to lower prescription prices; however, the so-called "average generic price" is about the same as the price of the lowest-priced branded items. Often the patient will pay more than the average unbranded product price. The physician can be sure that the patient gets equivalent therapy at a potentially lower or even the lowest cost by prescribing generically and specifying the manufacturer who sells the lowest-priced therapeutically equivalent product.
(JAMA 228:1009-1014, 1974)
Kemp BA, Moyer PR. Equivalent Therapy at Lower Cost: The Oral Penicillins. JAMA. 1974;228(8):1009–1014. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03230330039018
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