Good News for a Change: Cheaper, Generic Versions of Many Top-Selling Prescription Drugs Will Soon Be Available As Patents Expire (video)
Posted By Vicki McClure Davidson on July 25, 2011
It’s about time we had some good news.
A thin ray of light is penetrating through the murky, oppressive clouds of rising food prices, rising unemployment, rising job losses, and other depressing areas of economic doom: the patents on a number of top-selling prescription drugs, including Lexapro, Lipitor, Seroquel, Actos, and Plavix, are about to expire in the months ahead. Medications will become vastly cheaper for patients as price-reduced generic versions become available.
The patent for Zyprexa (generic name: olanzapine) for schizophrenia/bipolar use, will expire in October 2011, and many others thereafter — check this patent-expiring list.
Generic versions of medications are often priced up to 80 percent less than their name brand prescription counterparts. A number of retailers, such as Walmart, charge about 4 dollars for a generic prescription that can sometimes exceed $100 when prescribed by its trademarked name.
This is not only welcomed news for those who are frugal-minded, but for those who are desperately holding on to the edge of the economic precipice by their fingernails to pay monthly for costly medications out of their own pockets after losing their jobs.
From KGO News Talk AM 810, Ten Top-Selling Drugs Coming Off Patent:
(NEW YORK) — Ten of the world’s top-selling prescription drugs are about to get cheaper.
Over the next 17 months, the patents on brand-name medications like the cholesterol-lowering drug Lipitor and the blood thinner Plavix will expire, opening the door for generic versions that could cost up to 80 percent less. Name-brand drug costs could also fall because of the new competition. It might be bad news for drug makers, but good news for patients.
From ShortNews.com, Popular Prescription Pills´ Prices Poised to Plummet:
Over the next 14 months, the patents will expire on seven of the 20 best-selling prescription drugs, meaning lower drug costs for medicines used by millions of people every day. The drugs include the top two, Lipitor and Plavix.
It´s just the beginning of a wave of patent expirations that will happen between now and 2016 to drugs that have racked up a combined $255 billion in global annual sales. The expirations allow the creation of low-cost generic versions.