Lately I've been seeing an increase in the amount of name brand scripts. More often then not there are MD's that prescribe drugs that have cheaper alternatives but still prescribe the more expensive one. Why? well usually it's because of money/kickbacks. Now I must state that there are specific cases where generic versions are simply ineffective or do not have the same effect the name brand does. This is pretty rare though, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise.
FDA definition of a Generic Drug:
"A generic drug is the same as a brand name drug in dosage, safety, strength, how it is taken, quality, performance, and intended use. Before approving a generic drug product, FDA requires many rigorous tests and procedures to assure that the generic drug can be substituted for the brand name drug. The FDA bases evaluations of substitutability, or "therapeutic equivalence," of generic drugs on scientific evaluations. By law, a generic drug product must contain the identical amounts of the same active ingredient(s) as the brand name product. Drug products evaluated as "therapeutically equivalent" can be expected to have equal effect and no difference when substituted for the brand name product."
I would like to think this is widespread knowledge but my father was on Coreg paying 60-$80 a month when there is Carvedilol for < $20 monthly. These stories can go on and on. I recommend taking a look at your meds and researching to see if there is a generic equivalent, then asking your prescribing physician to switch you. There could be substantial savings depending on what meds your on.
Anyone taking Propecia for hair loss? Ask your doc to write for finasteride. Finasteride's mechanism of action is the same as Propecia's. Propecia is prescribed dose is 1 mg. Finasteride is prescribed for BPH, also known as Proscar in the name brand. So to save yourself a heck of a lot of money you could ask your doc to write you for finestaride (5mg) and cut it into quarters. Propecia is around $70-90 a month, and finestaride is $40 for 3 months.
Also check with Wal-Mart,K-mart,Target,Kroger etc for their list of inexpensive generic drugs ($4.00 I think)
Check with your local pharmacy to see if they have a prescription savings program. Some meds (like finestaride) are cheaper with this type of savings plan over Rx insurance. Your pharmacy will be able to run your meds through their various programs to see which is cheaper. Usually popular drugs have generic medications and are cheaper. Some are expensive no matter what, some depend on your insurance coverage. Some meds can cost hundreds and/or thousands of dollars per dose, hopefully your insurance will pick up some of the expense.
Also you can ask your MD to see if you can double the dose and cut the pill in half, which will save you some $$ in the end.
Vets, check your benefits, and then check them again.
This might be simply a review of common knowledge but hopefully someone can save a few dollars.
Feel free to add on your suggestions
I forgot to add on that Plavix will have a generic by March/April of 2011.