Brand Name or Generics: Biggest Bang for the Buck?

February 8 2010

When you shop, do you clip coupons to get cents off for the name brand or do you typically buy the house brand?

As for me? I compare the ingredients, weight, price; all things being equal, I like getting the most value for my money, and that usually (not always!) means the house brand wins.

What about a more important topic: drugs? There are all sorts of good arguments on both sides of the brand vs. generic table, and I won't repeat them here. However, the AARP bulletin awhile back (October 2009) published an eye-opening article "The 50 Most Prescribed Drugs" that I think you need to read. Guess how many of the 50 top drugs are brand name. Now guess how much of the pie they cost.

I won't be spoiling the "surprise" by telling you what you may already suspect. But here's a hint. The first brand name drug on the top 50 list, by number of prescrtiptions written, is Lipitor -- ranked 7.

The brand-name drugs in the AARP article appear in red type. Click on  any drug's name in the table to view an image of the drug, the number of prescriptions written for it in 2009, the retail cost of those prescriptions, its primary use. Click for more information on what the drug is, usage, interactions, and much more.

Category: Open to Debate
Filed under: Medication/Prescriptions