1.What is a generic drug?
Ans: A generic drug is a medication that has exactly the same active pharmaceutical ingredient(API) as the brand name drug & yields the same therapeutic effect.A Generic Drug is same in dosing,strength,quality,the way it works,the way it is taken,the way it should be used.
Generic drugs can only be marketed after patency of brand name drug expires(which may last upto 20 yrs).Generic drugs are much less expensive than brand name drugs.
2.Are generic drugs as safe & effective as brand name drugs?
Ans:Yes,generic drugs are as safe as brand name drugs.Generic drugs & brand name drugs before entering into the market is checked by FDA to see whether they are high in quality,purity,stability & strength or not.Generic drugs have the same API's as brand name drugs & therefore they have same benefits & risks as brand name drugs.
3.Why are generic drugs less expensive than brand name drugs?
Ans:Generic drug manufacturers don’t face the same costs as manufacturers of brand-name drugs. That’s because the brand-name maker often invented the drug, a process that can cost hundreds of millions of dollars. This is the rationale behind drug patents: They give pharmaceutical companies a period of years when only they can make money on a product in which they have made a large investment. That investment also includes advertising: all those TV commercials and billboards at bus stops.
For a generic manufacturer, no such investment is required — not in development and not in marketing. The drug’s formula is known, the clinical trials are complete; the generic maker’s only requirement is to demonstrate to regulators that its version is as good and effective in humans as the original.
That is an enormous economic advantage for these companies, which is why generic drugs are much less expensive than brand name drugs.
4.Why do generic & brand name drugs look different?
Ans:Trademark laws do not allow generic drugs to exactly look like that.