End of the month and the Bills are coming flying by and if you ever made a pie chart of your expenses I’m sure a big chunk of it would be screaming medical bills. Lifestyles diseases (Type 2 diabetes, blood pressure, etc) are the real leeches as these are our everyday requirements just like groceries. Let’s see how would knowing the difference between generic and branded medicines help us.
What is generic medicine?
A generic drug is a medication the same as an existing brand-name drug in dosage form, safety, potency, route of administration, and performance only cheaper. They have the same active ingredient as the latter but might not have the same vehicles.
Active ingredients– substances that chemically alter and directly affect the diagnosis, cure, treatment or prevention of a disorder or disease.
Vehicles– They carry the active ingredients. Example- Water.
Simple layman analogy- In Chicken curry, the main ingredient is chicken but the gravy can be made in diverse ways. The active ingredient here is the chicken while the vehicle is the gravy.
Example- In Paracetamol, the active ingredient is Paracetamol while maize starch, purified talc are the vehicles.
GENERIC VS BRANDED MEDICINE
|Same Active Ingredient as the branded drug.|
|Vehicles might be exactly the same or alternatives with the same efficiency are used.|
|Generic medicines are Inexpensive as compared to branded medicines. Sometimes even 5-10 folds cheaper.|
Difference between Generic and branded drug prices in India
Here is a list of Generic drug prices in India vs branded medicines. There are a few Cancer as well as HIV drugs mentioned, take a look at them to really see the stark difference.
Switch to generic medicines to ease out this load off your chest and your wallet.
Why do we have Branded drugs?
Medicine formulations are patented by companies who developed them. Hence no other company can produce them for the number of years the patent is valid.
Why branded medicines are so popular?
Branded medicines have the ‘pushup bra’ of marketing which is everything from fancy packaging, advertising, and doctors prescribing to you.
Fact check– The same companies which make the branded medicines also produce the Generic ones.
This pandemic has been financially and mentally exhausting for some of us, small decisions like this can help. Healthcare is a necessity, not a luxury.
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