Cost of Brand-Name Medications Jumps 93 Percent in Six Years


The average cost of brand-name prescription drugs in upstate New York rose 93 percent between 2004 and 2010 and 11 percent from 2009 to 2010, according to a report issued today by Excellus BlueCross BlueShield.
By contrast, generic prescription drug costs on average increased by less than $1 in the 2004 to 2010 time period.
The good news is that brand-name drugs now represent a smaller share of all prescriptions written in upstate New York, said Dr. Marybeth McCall, Excellus BCBS vice president and chief medical officer.
Brand-name drugs as a percent of all prescriptions written by physicians in upstate New York fell from 48.1 percent in 2005 to 28.4 percent in 2010.
During that same time period, the share of generic medicines among total prescriptions written rose from 51.9 percent to 71.6 percent.

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