Are you willing to pay five times as much for the label name?
Useful information about the drugs
Here you will find the maximum price, active substance and price you will pay if you do not accept generic exchange.
Here you will find an overview of which medicines can be exchanged for generic exchange.
Here you can find polls for the whole of Norway.
The polling season is taking place too many, and it also fills the medicine cabinets in the Norwegian homes.
Many are completely dependent on a small pill, a few doses of nasal spray and eye drops to get through the spring and summer.
Symptoms of pollen allergy and cold are often quite similar – with tight and runny nose, sneezing and general lethargy.
When nose and eyes flow, it may be ok to know that you can actually save a lot of money on making smart medicine choices.
When the patent date of a medicine expires, it is free to other drug manufacturers to produce the same medicine.
– It is the Norwegian Medicines Agency that approves a producer to sell its edition of the medicine in Norway, which agrees that it is equivalent or as good as the others on the market, “says Vitusapotek’s pharmacist, Troy Hammer.
When you are offered another preparation with the same active ingredients as your doctor has prescribed, it is called generic exchange.
Carefully considered by the pharmaceutical company
Hammer says that the drug agency carefully assesses any copy medications when reviewing documentation.
– This means that we as consumers should be able to feel confident that, for example, allergy medicine, cetirizine hydrochloride 10 mg, supplied by a number of manufacturers in the Norwegian market under the name Alzyr, Zyrtec and Citirizin, is equally safe and gives the same effect, he says.
Check active substance
But even if the medicines contain the same active ingredient, some are more familiar than others.
– The names Zyrtec and Alzyr are brand names that drug manufacturers Actavis and UCB have chosen to use on their products. In many cases, brand names are protected so that only one manufacturer is allowed to use it, says the pharmacist.
However, the active substance name cetirizine hydrochloride is not possible to brand name protect.
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There will therefore be more products called just this.
– Most often, they only use Citirizin, preferably with a hint of producer names so that, for example, Citirizin Ratiopharm or Citirizin Sandoz. Here’s Ratiopharm and Sandoz’s name, he says.
Safe to choose cheap
The state medicine agency has done the job for you and checked that all equal medicines are equally safe and effective.
It is therefore quite easy to choose the most affordable option.
– The market determines prices, and drug manufacturers negotiate and make agreements with the drug wholesalers who deliver medicines to pharmacies. The outcome of these agreements determines the price and availability of the different brands of the same medicine, “says Hammer.
For example, that Zyrtec is often more expensive than other equal alternatives has enough to do with the fact that the manufacturer of Zyrtec knows what the customer will pay for the product.
– More nasal spray addicts ultimately opt for surgery
Many people choose Zyrtec because they are familiar with the name and they are therefore willing to pay more to get this product, he says.
May be expensive to choose by yourself
With regard to prescription drugs, pricing is more complicated.
– Because the government is the largest payer of prescription drug through the blueprint scheme, the authorities have a price-regulating force through laws and regulations, “he said..
For the patient, if you arrive at the pharmacy with a blue prescription, and the pharmacy suggests a generic switch to a cheaper product, you may risk having to pay the bill yourself if you choose the most expensive drug.
Adjusts the maximum price
Section Head of the Norwegian Medicines Agency, Helga Festøy, confirms this.
Allergic or just cold?
– When it comes to prescriptive packs, if it’s generic swapping and the drug is included in the step-pricing system, the customer must pay a high price if he or she does not accept generic swapping, she says.
The Norwegian Medicines Agency therefore regulates the maximum price for prescriptive packages.
– However, there are also some non-prescription medicines for allergy sufferers, and for this it’s free price, she adds.
Can look different
Festøy also emphasizes that it is completely safe to thank yes for the generic swap.
– In case of generic swapping, the pharmacist may always deliver an equal drug. The drug will have the same active substance, strength and drug form as the one on the prescription, she says.
However, if you are offered another drug for the first time, do not be surprised if the medications look a little different than the medicine you used earlier.
Do not eat at all this day then
– They can both have different names and different looks. For example, the new tablets may have a different color, “says Festøy.
How much do you save on thanking you for the cheapest option:
Cetirizine hydrochloride (tablets):
Citrizin Mylan 100 pcs: 78,20 kr
Zyrtec USB 100 pcs: 358,70 kr
You save: $ 50.00
Mometason (nasal spray):
Mometason nasal spray 140 doses 86.50 kr
Nasonex nasal spray 140 doses £ 11.30
You save: $ 5.80
Mometason nasal spray 3×140 doses 197.10 $
Nasonex nasal spray 3×140 doses 286.30 kr
You save: $ 12.00
Ebastin 10 mg 100 pcs £ 15.99
Kestine 10 mg 100 pcs 327.30 kr
You save: £ 174.20
Ebastin 20 mg 100 pcs £ 31.60
Kestine 20 mg 100 pcs 715.20 kr
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You save: £ 39.60
Price difference on non-prescription preparations:
Cetirizine hydrochloride (tablets)
Zyrtec 10 mg 30 pcs 199.00 kr
Cititizin Ratiopharm 10 mg 30 pcs 175.00 kr
You save: $ 24.00
(Examples of price differences on prescription preparations are taken from Vitusapoteket)
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