WHAT Are Generic Drugs and WHY ARE Generic Drugs COMPARATIVELY CHEAPER THAN THEIR BRAND NAMES EQUIVALENTS?
What are the Generic Drugs?
A generic drug (generic drugs, short: generics) are drugs which are produced without patent protection. They are based on the exact same active ingredients and yield the same effect as Brand Named Drugs. Generic Drugs meet the same quality standards as Brand Named Drugs. A generic drug must contain the same active ingredients as the original formulation.
Why are Generic Drugs much cheaper than their original brands?
Patented medicine is more expensive because:
- Innovative brand-name pills require great amounts of money (from hundreds of millions of dollar to billions) and time (nearly 10-15 years).
- Advertising and Marketing techniques are quite costly as well.
Once a drug is created the original manufacturer needs to pay back their expense in creating the drug and testing it as well as return a profit to its owners which is why brand named drugs are so much more expensive then Generics. Patents last about 20 years, and once the patent is finished any firm can product a Generic version which greatly reduces the cost by up to 80%.
Generic pills are cheaper because
- The production doesn’t require a new formula or production technology (existing ones are used instead by reverse-engineer known drug compounds).
- Generic pills are bio-equivalents of the brand drugs and therefore they don’t need the additional advertising. In fact they receive the benefit of the previous marketing efforts of the brand-name drug company, including media advertising, presentations by drug representatives, and distribution of free samples.
- Generic manufacturers also do not bear the burden of proving the safety and efficacy of the drugs through clinical trials, since these trials have already been conducted by the brand name company.
- The quality and manufacturing standards are not compromised and some brand drugs and equivalent generic drugs are even made at the exact same facility but branded differently. India, being the largest manufacturing base for generic drugs, has a number of well-established licensed and US FDA approved companies including: Cipla, Ranbaxy (owned by Japanese Daiichi Sankyo), Torrent, Sun Pharmaceuticals, Wyeth (part of Pfizer), Piramal (owned by Abbott), Intas, and Cadila. TEVA in Israel is the world’s largest generic drug manufacture and another safe choice for generic drugs.
That is why generic pills are cheaper and are so popular. These save the patients and insurance companies substantial costs.