How Makers of Brand-Name Pharmaceuticals Thwart Market Entry of Generic Competitors

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<p>The availability of generic drugs drives down pharmaceutical prices by as much as 80 percent and saves the U.S. health care system billions of dollars. But a new study out in <em>JAMA Internal Medicine </em>finds that brand-name drug manufacturers employ several strategies that delay generic competitors from entering the market — and thereby limit the potential for even greater health care savings.</p><p>Researchers Kerstin Noëlle Vokinger, M.D., Aaron S. Kesselheim, M.D., and colleagues detail the key strategies brand-name manufacturers use to restrain competition, such as: obtaining and listing additional, secondary patents on their drugs, including those for a pill’s coating or for trivial modifications; engaging in strategic settlements of patent litigation; and restricting generic manufacturers’ access to drug samples needed for bioequivalence testing.</p>
<p>The authors say the Food and Drug Administration or Congress could implement several reforms to limit anticompetitive tactics. These would help ensure the timely availability of generics while reducing overall spending on prescription drugs.</p> Read more