29-Apr-13 8:00 AM  CST

Reports Show U.S. Consumers Pay More for Drugs

It is not a surprise that consumers pay more for name brand prescription drugs than in any other country.  They pay more and a lot more than individuals which live in other developed nations according to a recent report published this month in the journal Health Affairs


The new study also noted that patients had trouble with understanding pricing systems used to figure out how much their medications cost.  Some of the misunderstanding comes from pharmacies not clearly explaining the reasons why one name brand drug costs more than the other.  United States average pricing covers selling issues such as average wholesale prices, average sale prices, federal supply schedule prices, Medicare Part D sales prices, consumer rebates, and discounts. 


University of Michigan business professor Erik Gordon recently commented on the U.S. pharmaceutical pricing systems in a recent article published on Pharmalive.com.  “Prices are consuming and camouflaged.  True prices are nearly impossible to ascertain.  Average wholesale prices are neither wholesale nor average.  Rebates and discounts are based on sales of single drugs and on sales of baskets of unrelated drugs make it impossible to calculate the actual price paid for a particular drug,” said Gordon. 


As a pharmacy technician, do you think it is fair that U.S. consumers pay more for their name brand drugs than other developed countries? 


1.  Kanavos, Panos.  “Higher US Branded Drug Prices and Spending Compared to Other Countries May Stem Partly from Quick Uptake of New Drugs.”  Health Affairs Journal.  Web.  Apr 2013. 


2.  Sell, David.  “Report:  U,S. Consumers Pay More for Drugs.”  PharmaLive.  Web.  9 Apr 2013. 

For additional information on this article, please contact:
Jennifer S. O'Reilly
Source: NPTAnews  

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