Different Med

I read Bevs entry regarding the change to her medication which is apparently put down to cost cutting. For years I was on Symbicort which my chemist told me was the Rolls Royce in terms of inhalers for COPD treatment. Whilst it may be a bit more expensive, I feel it could be cheaper and I set the blame at the door of the NHS who allow the large pharmaceutical companies to charge excessive prices for drugs which in many cases are available much cheaper but are not brand names. As an example just look at how large superstores can sell no prescription medication at a fraction of the cost of brand names.

Had my grump now Bev ha ha.

9 Replies

  • Hi

    Branded drugs are patented by the drug company to recover the cost of development which can run into billions of pounds, only when the patent as expired 20 years in U.K. can be extended for a further five.

    When the drug can be manufactured by other companies under a different name.

    The NHS encourages GPs to prescribe genetic versions of the branded drug.

    I use Lorazepam brand name Ativan. The genetic version of which there at least three all have different effects which I have to get use to each time they change.

    Not all unbranded drugs are cheaper, there are instances where the mark up as been up to 2000 %

    Which the NHS as no choice but to pay, as several of such charges relate to ongoing treatment with no current alternative.

    It is the larger pharmaceutical companies who licenses out branded products to gain higher profits, because they are fully aware of the need. Who are to blame.

  • There have been a couple of posts about this before.

    Unless patients are asthmatics or have severe COPD steroid inhalers are being withdrawn. This is because of research-based evidence that there's an increased risk of pneumonia with the steroid inhalers.


  • Hi Sue, how interesting, I hadn't heard that steroid inhalers were being withdrawn. I use symbicort. At my last nurse review she did try to change my inhaler but in the end she actually added another one on. I will wait and see what happens! I have bronchiectasis. Heather

  • Fourth attempt to reply to you Watford Girl using the "@" procedure, so this time its done via the old fashioned route! I was surprised this week when seeing my LLC,who told me I was on no steroids unless I was using my rescue med's of Pred. I'd been changed a few months ago from Seretide to Duo .....something or another which I've not got to hand at the moment.

    Looks like they've finally realised steroids are to be used very wisely and cautiously because of the long term effects that could out weigh the benefits etc.

  • Symbicort's patent has only recently expired. This is why patients are being transferred to newly available generic drugs like Duoresp. Some members have had difficulty changing over, some not.

    Alongside this change, as Sue (Watford Girl) says above, the guidelines for copd treatment have altered and drugs like Symbicort, Duoresp etc are only being prescribed to those with Stage 3/4 copd and/or asthma.

    Having both these plus bronchiectasis, Ive managed to hang on to my Symbicort for now - I refused to change until the warmer weather and my GP agreed not to disrupt my treatment as Ive been well now for nearly 2 years after recovering from double pneumonia early in 2015 (that could all go south in a heartbeat though!)

    Then you can read Coughalot's situation on her post, different again.

    A lot of changes going on.

  • Hi twopars my post was NOT about changing from branded drugs to cheaper generic versions. It was about the new gold standard saying that I was being over treated by being on symbicort in stage 1.

    My meds have been changed but I don't know if the new ones are cheaper or not than the symbicort. This is the reason why they were changed. As far as I know I am not being given a generic med.

  • Yes Bev, I did go off at a tangent but I reckon everyone knew what you were saying. I wanted to mention the cost of drugs that's why I submitted a fresh topic. x

  • Ok twopars you are forgiven :) The cost of drugs etc. is a great concern if it affects us isn't it? Maybe they are trying to kill us all off to save money? Bev xx

  • Stay grumpy lass.

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