Over the past eight years, American people starter spending more money on medicine. At the same time, without prejudice to the family budget, only 22% of our fellow citizens can buy drugs. For the rest, the treatment seriously hits the pocket. Winter is on the threshold. At this time of year, people traditionally get sick. Naturally, the consumption of drugs is growing. The choice of drugs is a problem for both doctors and patients. So what are the secrets?
Drug prices are the most painful topic in medicine. Why can the cost of different drugs with the same active substance vary by ten times?
Such differences are beyond reason. Why does one pack with 20 pure anesthetic pills with 200 mg of ibuprofen cost 13 dollars and the other over 150? Often the price is more significant in 40 times. Faced with such price injustice, people begin to conduct their investigations, compare the prices of various drugs and place related tables with them on the Internet. Do you believe such lists? Where is the truth?
Manufacturers of the most expensive drugs usually justify their price by the fact that the scientists of their company created this medicine, that the company conducted its tests and that all this required large investments. And all these costs are included in the price of drugs. And other firms decided to produce these drugs, without spending a cent on research, began merely to copy the drug – to make generics (as they call drugs-analogs containing the same active substances).
This legend is only partly true. Young drugs are usually granted patent protection for 15 years, and at this time, no one else has the right to produce them. Such a period for the monopoly in the pharmaceutical market gives the company to recapture the costs of developing, testing and promoting the drug. After that, the drug can be released by anyone who wants and can. This implies that all manufacturers start as if from scratch. The formula of the active substance and the properties of the drug are known, and the cost of its production is no longer so different when the price of drugs from different manufacturers is ten times different.
But back to ibuprofen. The drug was launched in 1962, more than 50 years ago. During this time, all conceivable and inconceivable terms of protection have passed, but the price of the original drug is higher than many generics at ten times! Well, let it be 2-3 times, but at 10? How to explain it? The marketing specialist will say that the brand price is “protected” in the expensive medicine. The drug became famous under the brand name, proved its effectiveness and quality, won the trust of customers, etc. But can you imagine that the price for this ideological component accounts for 90%? About 10% is the cost of the drug, all the cheats associated with the sale, profit, and the remaining 90% is ideology.
It is possible, of course, that the cheapest medicines are counterfeit. In our country, this is not excluded. Experts do not conceal that a lot of fakes are leaking through the control system, and the meager penalties only contribute to the development of the pharmaceutical industry. How to be for an ordinary patient in this situation?
What to do?
If we are talking about medicines that are sold officially without a prescription and are taken sporadically to treat conditions like joint pain, cold symptoms, etc., then it is hardly worth paying a lot. Buy a drug from a low or medium price range, and it will help. If there is no point, then it does not worth to fork out and pay for the brand price.
It is more difficult with involved drugs. For example, with antibiotics. We recently encountered such a problem. The child fell ill with scarlet fever, and this is an infection where medicines are vital. Without them, the risk of severe complications for the heart and kidneys is much higher. It is impossible to pull on their appointment, and after an extra evening visit to the children’s hospital,
I was able to buy medicine only for 17 dollars for a bottle – there was no other. Two days of injections did not give results. For antibiotics, if 2-3 days were not enough, then the drug is ineffective. After consulting with colleagues, doctors went to search for analogs of this antibiotic, which cost at least 200-300 dollars per dose. We took medicine for 700 dollars. It is 40 times more expensive, but it worked. This situation with antibiotics is criminal, a lot depends on these drugs, and control over them must be robust and uncompromising. And if you need to buy medicines, do not skimp, take pills from the middle or higher price group. And even if they do not help, the bacteria are resistant to such a remedy, and you need treatment with another active substance.
The more comfortable situation with the choice of drugs for the treatment of hypertension, heart disease, lung, and other chronic ailments. Suppose you are taking an expensive drug that relieves pressure well. Try a few days to replace it with a cheaper one. If the demand does not rise, you can switch to this medicine. If the condition has worsened – go back to the old one. The same principle applies to other diseases. But, if the price is not critical for you, you should not switch to another medicine.
How to choose medicine for children
Unfortunately, young children often get sick. So for their treatment, it is necessary to buy high-quality drugs that will not only help you effectively but will also be as safe as possible for the health of the child. There are quite a few drugs today for the treatment of certain diseases on the market, but choosing a high-quality medicine that will help to cope with the baby’s illness effectively is not so easy. It is essential to select drugs that are designed for children, and have the appropriate dosage for the young body. You should not save on treatment and look for cheap substitutes for certain high-quality drugs, since saving on health often leads to not the best consequences.
For the beginning, it is best to contact a doctor who will prescribe the necessary drugs for the treatment of a particular disease. After that, it is essential to study this drug and whether it is worth using it for treatment. Since there are many drugs, and we have only one health. Especially the child’s health is very fragile and requires attention to detail.
Any treatment of the disease begins with the purchase of medicines that can help in the struggle for good health. Since children are most susceptible to infections, because of weak body and weak immunity, it is important to choose good and effective drugs for the treatment and prevention of diseases. Such as children’s sorbent, especially if there are any epidemics and a higher likelihood of getting sick.
It is also important to remember that it is necessary to observe the child and his state of health, and in cases where the child feels unwell, immediately help him, examine the doctor and start treatment.
Speaking about how to select drugs for the treatment of children, it is essential to consider several crucial nuances:
⦁ Study the composition of the drug, its reliability, and effectiveness. This is necessary so that the drug helps and does not harm the child. For proper treatment, it is important to choose high-quality drugs, selected individually, so that such drugs reliably help the child to recover;
⦁ Remember that the doctor should prescribe medications for treatment, and you should not self-medicate, as this can be harmful, especially if you buy medicines for a child. Therefore, it is essential to choose proven drugs prescribed by a specialist;
⦁ Study the reviews about the medication you purchase to understand how effective and high-quality they are, and whether they should be used to treat certain diseases.
The efficacy of medicines that a patient uses to treat a particular disease depends on various parameters. And one of them is the integrity of the pharmaceutical company that launched it. How urgent is the problem of counterfeit medicines in America? And how to distinguish an effective dose from a poor-quality product?
Medications can be original (produced by the company for the first time) and generic (reproduced or being copies of the original). Counterfeit medicines do not contain substances that are indicated on the package. They may turn out to be ordinary tablets, which have harmless chalk or glucose in their structure, but sometimes they contain highly toxic and dangerous substances so that they can be harmful to health.
According to the World Health Organization, the proportion of counterfeit drugs in the world is 12%. In countries with a low standard of living and an underdeveloped pharmacovigilance system, this figure is much higher and reaches 80% in some African countries.