News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


5 Questions To Ask When You Are Offered An Alternative Brand

30 MARCH 2012

5 Questions To Ask When You Are Offered An Alternative Brand Of Medicine:
Be Medicinewise Week 2012

NPS has released a new quick question guide for consumers designed to help them make a safe and confident choice between medicine brands.

Available on the NPS website, the 5 questions cover what consumers should ask their pharmacist when they are offered a different brand of their medicine so that they make the right choice for them.

New research from NPS* found that 74% of Australians who take prescription medicines were offered an alternative brand of one of their medicines by their pharmacist the last time they purchased it. Of those offered a choice, 72% accepted the offer and purchased the alternative brand while 25% stayed with the brand they were originally prescribed.

NPS Head of Programs Karen Kaye says that with changes to medicine pricing arrangements coming into effect this weekend, the cost to consumers of many medicines will drop and some brands may become less expensive than others.

“Many people will be offered different brands of their usual medicines and, for most people, cost will be an important issue,” says Ms Kaye.

“Ultimately the choice lies with the consumer but it’s important people know that if they are offered an alternative brand of their prescription medicine, it will be just as safe and effective as their original brand.”

Ms Kaye says pharmacists will only offer an alternative brand of a medicine if it is bioequivalent to — that is, it works exactly the same way as — the original brand.

“When the patent for a medicine expires, other companies are able to manufacture medicines containing the same active ingredient and dose as the original brand. This means both brands have the same effect on your body,” says Ms Kaye.

“For some people the benefits of choosing a different brand, such as a lower price, may not be worth the drawbacks, such as adjusting to a different-looking medicine packet. People with certain conditions or in certain circumstances may be advised by their doctor to stick with their original brand.”

Medicine mishaps with generic medicines often come about because people don’t realise that the new brand of medicine is intended to replace an existing brand. Keeping a Medicines List is one way to keep track of the active ingredient in each medicine you’re taking to ensure you don’t double up.

“If you are confused or unsure, talk with your doctor, pharmacist or health professional who can help work out which choice is best for you,” says Ms Kaye.

5 questions to ask when you are offered an alternative brand of medicine

1. Is it okay for me to choose a different brand of my medicine?
2. What are the benefits and disadvantages for me if I use a different brand?
3. Is there a difference in cost?
4. Which of my usual medicines does this replace?
5. What is the active ingredient in my medicine?

Information about making safe medicine brand choices is available on the NPS website at http://www.nps.org.au/bemedicinewise/brand_choices

People with questions about their medicines can also call the Medicines Line (1300 MEDICINE or 1300 633 424), Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm EST.

www.nps.org.au/nms2012

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Album Review: Donnie Trumpet And The Social Experiments: Surf

Chance the Rapper is one of my favourite rappers of the last couple years. He bought a uniquely fucked up, acid sound with his debut Acid Rap which has demonstrably influenced others including ILoveMakonnen and A$AP Rocky. It’s remarkable that, at such a ... More>>

Photos: Inside The Christchurch Arts Centre Rebuild

Lady Pippa Blake visited Christchurch Arts Centre chief executive André Lovatt, a 2015 recipient of the Blake Leader Awards. The award celebrated Lovatt’s leadership in New Zealand and hisand dedication to the restoration of the Arts Centre. More>>

Running Them Up The Flagpole: Web Tool Lets Public Determine New Zealand Flag

A School of Design master’s student is challenging the flag selection process by devising a web tool that allows the public to feed their views back in a way, he says, the current government process does not. More>>

ALSO:

Survey: ‘The Arts Make My Life Better’: New Zealanders

New Zealanders are creative people who believe being involved in the arts makes their lives better and their communities stronger. Nine out of ten adult New Zealanders (88%) agree the arts are good for them and eight out of ten (82%) agree that the arts help to improve New Zealand society. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Reprieve For Te Papa Press

Following its review of the role of Te Papa Press, Te Papa has committed to continue publishing books during the museum’s redevelopment, Chief Executive Rick Ellis announced yesterday. More>>

Law Society: Sir Peter Williams QC, 1934 - 2015

“Sir Peter was an exceptional advocate. He had the ability to put the defence case for his clients with powerful oratory. His passion shone through in everything he did and said.” Mr Moore says Sir Peter’s lifelong commitment to prison reform was instrumental in ensuring prison conditions and the rights of prisoners were brought to public attention. More>>

ALSO:

CTU: Peter Conway – Family Statement

Peter committed his whole working life to improving the lives of working people, both in unions and, more recently, as the Economist and Secretary of the Council of Trade Unions. He was previously Chair of Oxfam New Zealand and was on the Board of NZ Trade and Enterprise. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news