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Help your patients lower their costs by prescribing generic drugs

10/12/2016

With an upcoming formulary update for our commercial plans, some brand-name drugs will be moving to higher tiers and will cost members more out of pocket. Patients listen to you: please prescribe generics when available and assure your patients that generic drugs are as safe and effective as brand-name drugs.

We will mail letters next month to some of our members to let them know that one or more of the brand-name drugs that they are currently taking are now available in less-expensive generic forms. We will encourage them to make the switch to generic.

Members will have the option to continue taking brand-name versions. But their cost-shares may increase after Jan. 1, 2017, when some brand-name drugs move to higher tiers as a result of our regular formulary updates.

We hope to enlist your support in helping your patients make the switch to generic. Here are some facts you can share with your patients if they ask you about it:

  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires generic drugs to have the same quality and performance as brand-name drugs.
  • When it comes to price, there is a big difference: on average, the cost of a generic drug is 80 percent to 85 percent lower than the brand-name product.1
  • Research shows that generics work just as well as brand-name drugs: cheaper doesn’t mean lower quality.

Your patients will listen to you and appreciate your advice.

Source: Facts about Generic Drugs. U.S. Food and Drug Administration.