Many people still have very little knowledge about generic drugs and most of the time, the large part of what they know are misconceptions that don’t really have any solid basis as to what generic drugs really are. Some think generics are dangerous, unsafe, and weaker versions of their branded counterparts at best. But these presumptions aren’t true at all as generic meds are so much more than what most people make them be.
Generic drugs may be cheap and affordable but their price doesn’t really speak for their real value. These are effective and safe medicines, just like the brand-name drugs that are sold locally and online. But even with these facts, there’s still a large percentage of customers who prefer going with the expensively-priced branded meds believing they are better choices than the inexpensive generics. They somehow think that the price makes the branded meds superior to generics which is a faulty way of perceiving the value of the medicines. The fact that generics are sold alongside the branded meds at local pharmacies and online drugstores only mean that these drugs are valuable enough to be given a spot. And we all know that online and local pharmacies won’t sell ineffective and unsafe drugs to customers, giving us an insight into the real worth of generic drugs that most people tend to overlook and ignore.
The prices of branded medicines actually have very little to do with their actual use because what makes them expensive are the outlays that their manufacturers have spent in research, development, production, marketing, advertisement, and others. The research and development stage of a new medicine alone would cost billions of dollars and for the pharmaceutical companies to offset all of their expenses, they must put a large price tag on their drugs. They will enjoy 20 years of exclusivity for their drug brands provided by patent protection but after it expires, it gives way to other manufacturers to produce generic versions of that particular drug.
Since the manufacturers of generic medicines will only reproduce the already manufactured drug, the costs will only be very small. Unlike the large pharma companies that have spent billions in developing a drug, generic drug manufacturers will only be reproducing that medicine at very low costs, allowing them to sell the drugs at cheap prices. Generic meds have the exact same formulation, performance, strength, route of administration and dosage as the branded drugs and what only made them cheaper is the fact that they are only reproductions and not initially developed and researched medicines. They are manufactured by various pharmaceutical companies but all use the same active ingredient as the branded medicine.
Do Generic Drugs Take Longer to Work in the Body?
The answer to this question is a no. Generic medicines use the very same active components used by their branded counterparts and that’s why generic meds will work in the exact same manner as how a branded medicine would take effect in the body. A generic drug has the same onset of effect as its branded equivalent and it also has the same length of effect. Since generic drugs have the exact same properties as their branded equal, it also means that the generic medicines will also have the same risks and side effects as the original brand.
Are Generic Drugs as safe as Brand-Name Medications?
In every manner. Contrary to the mistaken belief of many, both generic drugs and brand-name meds are produced in manufacturing plants that have passed the stringent quality standards set by the World Health Organization for safe drug manufacturing. Generic and branded medicine manufacturers do not undergo separate screenings conducted by the WHO but they are screened using the same quality standards. If these standards are not met, they won’t be permitted to manufacture medicines.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also makes sure that the factories where brand-name drugs and generic drugs are made meet the same high standards. WHO is not the only health agency who is closely monitoring the of the drugs being manufactured by pharma companies but also FDA, who conducts thousands of checks yearly for the safety of the consumers.
The checks that the FDA conducts doesn’t stop on the manufacturing plants but they also subject the pharmaceutical products that they produce to more rigorous test to see if these drugs are indeed safe for use. FDA also checks if these generic drugs meet the criteria that it requires of a generic drug if it’s the exact same reproduction of its branded equivalent. If a generic drug fails to be an exact same version even in the slightest, it will not be approved for use or sale.
Does Every Brand-Name Drug Have a Generic Version?
Unfortunately, no. Newly released medicines come with patents after they are made and these patents prohibit generic drug manufacturers from making generic versions of their drug for a long period of time even spanning decades, depending on the length of time the patent is valid. Today, we already see lots of generic medicines in the market which only means that the patents of these drugs have already run their course, allowing the generic medicine manufacturers to reproduce them. But recently introduced drugs are still without generics due to the reason that their patents have not yet expired. When the time comes in the future that the patent of these medicines expires, only then will the generic drug manufacturers be able to make their own versions and sell them at much cheaper prices. Customers are always at an advantage when they decide to buy generic drugs because aside from saving money, they will get the exact same effects that the branded meds can give.
Generic drugs are 100% safe to use and it’s always wise to purchase them because of the big savings that the customers can get. Additional savings mean that they can purchase more of their medicines for future use. Not only do they get to save money in buying generics but they will also get the exact same results that they get from their brand-name drugs.