Health Policy & Advocacy
Resources
Basic InformationMore InformationLatest News
AHA News: Why People Fear Performing CPR on Women – and What to Do About It'Green Prescriptions' May Backfire for SomePreventive Health Care Falls by Wayside During PandemicSmoking Bans Don't Work If Not Enforced, NYC Study FindsTelemedicine Out of Reach for Those Who Can't Get OnlineLies Spread on Social Media May Mean Fewer Vaccinations1 in 3 Americans Prescribed Inappropriate DrugsColon Cancer Screening Should Start at Age 45: Task ForceWhat Will It Take for People to Embrace a COVID Vaccine?What Will Convince Americans to Get a COVID-19 Vaccine?CDC Recommends Face Masks in All Public Transportation SettingsInsured Patients Are Getting Surprise Bills After ColonoscopiesBogus 'Cure' Claims Have U.S. Consumers Snapping Up CBD ProductsPediatricians' Group Tackles Racism in Health CareAs Virtual Doctor Visits Spike, Concerns About Equity, Missed Diagnoses GrowWas FDA Lax in Approving Opioids Too Easily?Allowing More Gay Men to Donate Corneas Could Save Sight for Thousands: StudyAccuracy of COVID-19 Antibody Tests Varies Widely, Study FindsCould Drones Delivering Defibrillators Save Lives?Statins Going Generic Saved Medicare BillionsAHA News: Looming Wave of Evictions, Housing Instability Pose Threat to HealthAHA News: Health Apps Pose Privacy Risks, But Experts Offer This AdviceCould You Save a Life After Mass Violence? Most Americans Say NoGun Violence Costs U.S. Health Care System $170 Billion AnnuallyWith COVID Vaccine in Works, 1 in 5 Americans Doesn't Believe in ShotsTelehealth Skyrocketing Among Older AdultsPharmacists in All U.S. States Can Give Kids Childhood ShotsAHA News: COVID-19's Economic Fallout Expands Food Insecurity, as Groups Scramble to HelpCOVID-19 Clinical Trials Lack Diversity, Researchers SayLook Beyond Fossil Fuels to Curb Air PollutionTelemedicine Is Here: Experts Offer Tips for SeniorsMany Older Adults Can't Connect With Telehealth: StudyAHA News: High-Speed Internet Offers Key Connection to Health, But Millions Lack It11 States Could Face ICU Doc Shortages as Coronavirus Cases SurgeWill the Telemedicine Boom Outlast the Pandemic?Yet Another Study Finds Vaccines Are SafeIn Rush to Publish, Most COVID-19 Research Isn't Reliable, Experts SayWith Tighter Handgun Laws, U.S. Would See Fewer Suicides by Young PeoplePandemic Has ER Docs Stressed Out and Weary: SurveyU.S. Air Quality Got Better During Pandemic: StudyColon Cancer Tests by Mail Might Boost ScreeningWill CPR Save Your Life? Study Offers a Surprising AnswerWill COVID Pandemic's Environmental Benefit Last?AHA News: As Pandemic Disrupts Research, Scientists Look for New Ways ForwardAmericans Lag Behind Brits When It Comes to HealthBan Menthol Cigarettes, Lower Smoking Rates?Tech Is Keeping More Americans in Touch With DoctorsEven Small Reductions in Air Pollution Help The HeartHigh Costs Lead Millions of Americans to Shop Abroad for Rx DrugsPandemic Hits Primary Care Practices Hard Across the U.S.: Study
Links
Related Topics

Health Insurance
Healthcare

Statins Going Generic Saved Medicare Billions

HealthDay News
by -- Robert Preidt
Updated: Sep 14th 2020

new article illustration

MONDAY, Sept. 14, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Here's evidence that prescription drugs don't have to cost a fortune: New research finds Medicare saved billions as more generic cholesterol-lowering medications became available, even though the number of Americans using the drugs increased.

"One of the most important contributors to our health care costs is expenditure on prescription drugs," said study author Dr. Ambarish Pandey, a cardiologist and assistant professor of internal medicine at University of Texas (UT) Southwestern Medical Center. "The switch to generics is an effective strategy to cut the costs incurred by health systems."

Between 2010 and 2018, patents on a number of cholesterol-lowering drugs expired -- including Crestor and Zetia -- and generic versions became available.

For the study, researchers analyzed Medicare Part D Prescription Drug data from January 2014 through December 2018. They found that the number of prescriptions for statins and other cholesterol-lowering drugs climbed from 20.5 million to 25.2 million in that period, a 23% increase.

But even though prescriptions for the drugs rose, total costs decreased, according to the study.

The number of prescriptions for generic cholesterol-lowering drugs rose by 35%, from 17.8 million to 24 million, while overall spending on statins fell by 52%, from $4.8 billion in 2014 to $2.3 billion in 2018.

Statins are the most popular type of cholesterol-lowering drug in the United States, prescribed to more than 35 million people.

During the study period, Medicare still spent $9.6 billion on brand-name cholesterol-lowering medications, but could have saved an additional $2.5 billion of that by switching to generics more quickly when they became available, the researchers noted.

The findings were published Sept. 9 in the journal JAMA Cardiology.

"It's important for our health care system to find avenues to become more cost-efficient and accessible," said study first author Dr. Andrew Sumarsono, an assistant professor of internal medicine at UT Southwestern.

"Even though there is still a lot of work to be done, it is encouraging to see how quickly patients switched to generic options once they became available," Sumarsono said in a UT Southwestern news release. "This rapid switch to generics saved Medicare a lot of money."

More information

The 'Million Hearts' initiative at the Department of Health and Human Services has more on cholesterol.




328 W. Claiborne St.
P.O. Box 964
Monroeville,
Alabama 36460
Tel: (251)575-4203
Fax:(251)575-9459


powered by centersite dot net