We all prescribe generic drugs only, where is the confusion then? (Part 1)

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The final IMA Stand on generic drugs
Write Legible
Write Generic (Generic- Generic or Trade Generic or Branded Generic)
Write Chemical name of the drug in CAPITAL (up to two drugs if combination)
Write NLEM (Counsel the patient, if writing non NLEM)
Write the rational (most economical and of quality) brand (in bracket, not in capital)
Non-scheduled drugs, include them in advisories and scheduled drugs in Rx
Followed by other details

Advice
PARACETAMOL ( Calpol) 500 mg SOS
Diet as advised
30 minutes of brisk walking daily
Rx
Tab LOSARTAN ( Losar) 50 mg at 8am
ATENOLOL 50 + AMLODIPINE 5 mg (Aten AM) 8pm
METFORMIN ( Metlong) 1000 mg at bed time
A 2 Z one at 8pm daily
The NLEM List is available at http://cdsco.nic.in/WriteReadData/NLEM-2015/NLEM,%202015.pdf

IMA Stand in detail

1. What is the difference between branded and generic drugs?
Branded drugs: These are drugs sold under a trade mark within the validity of patent life by the innovator or their licensee. Hardly any Indian drugs are available in this group. Most are international company patented drugs.
Generic drugs: This nomenclature of a drug is adopted post its patent expiry.
- In an RTI reply MCI has admitted that it does not have the definition of generic drug.
- It is also not defined under Drugs and Cosmetic Act 1940 and rules thereafter.
-Under drugs and cosmetic rules, section 96, which specifies manner of labeling “the procedure of the drug shall be printed or written in a more conspicuous manner than the trade name.”
- As per US-FDA, generic drug is a drug that is comparable to a brand in dosage form, strength, route of administration, quality and performance characteristics and intended use.
- WHO: Generic version of a drug means a pharmaceutical product, usually intended to be interchangeable with an innovator product that is manufactured without any license from the innovator company and marketed after the expiry of the date of the patent or other exclusive rights, under a non-proprietary name rather than a proprietary or brand name.
- In simpler terms, generic medicines are off patent drugs which can be sold by any pharmaceutical manufacturer without any license from the original manufacturer.

2. How are generic drugs marketed in India?
In India, a generic drug is available in three versions.
• Generic-Generic or Generic only version (sold under chemicals / salt name only. Mostly for institutional supply. As multiple companies market or will market this version, we will have to write the name of the company in bracket to ensure quality (e.g. Jan Aushadhi).
Definition as per DPCO para 2 (j): generic version of a medicine means a formulation sold in pharmacopeial name or the name of the active pharmaceutical ingredient contained in the formulation, without any brand name.
• Trade Generic Version (Generics sold under a trade or brand name). They are not promoted by the company and left to retail channel to sell these products. These are supplied to retailers at extremely low prices while printed MRPs are high (high trade margins).

• Branded Generic Version (Generics sold under brand names). These are promoted by the company through medical representatives; doctors are incentivised to prescribe branded generics and enjoy 90% of the market.

• Jan Aushadhi Generic-Generic Drugs (here the word Jan Aushadhi is the brand). For example, Jan Aushadhi or drugs under similar stores are the examples. For example, PARACETAMOL (Jan Aushadhi)
3. Are there any other differences in these versions of generic drugs apart from their MRP?
The cost of manufacturing is same whether Branded Generic, Trade Generic, Generic- Generic or Jan Aushadhi Generic-Generic.
All four versions have same active ingredient (s), same route of administration, same dosage form, same strength and same conditions of use as branded drugs.
4. Can a pharma company make all versions of generic drugs?
Yes, a single company can market one, two, three or all versions. If a company is producing all versions they will have the same ingredient, same quality but variable prices.
Generic only version can be made and marketed by local generic pharmaceutical companies as the only preparation. Similarly, local state companies can market trade only version of generics.
Jan Aushadhi generics are procured from top companies of the country.
5. Is Generic name of the drug same as the generic version of a drug?
No, the generic name of a drug is not the same as generic drug. It only signifies the name of chemical salt n the drug.

6. Can you give few examples?
Example Cetirizine, 10 mg, tablet
Scheduled drug, item 3. ix
Ceiling price fixed by NPPA 1.99 per tablet
As on May 2015 sold in 84 brand names (generic and brand)

Let us take one example of Cipla, brands marketed

• CETCIP 10 mg: MRP/ tab 0.3125, Retailer prize 0.250 with margin 25% for 100 pack size
• Cetcip 10 mg: MRP/ tab 2.016, Retailer prize 0.2532 paisa with 700% margin, pack size 10
• Okacef 10 mg: Pack size 10, MRP 2.016/ tab, price to retailer 0.250 paisa and 706.40 % trade margin
• ALERID 10 mg, Pack size 10, MRP 2.016 per tab with 1.536 Rs price to retailer and 31.25% margin.
• Jan Aushadhi Cetirizine 10 mg: MRP 40 p / tab

The branded version which is promoted through doctors is Alerid and costs Rs 2/- to the consumer.

In case of Jan Aushadhi the margin is going to the consumer.

Hospitals and medical establishments who own pharmacies are likely to buy Cetcip or Okacef and likely to sell at the rate of Alerid to get 700% margin.

Hospitals may substitute brands from branded generic to trade generic.

Similar things are likely to be done by chemists if they are allowed to substitute drugs.

For practical purposes, trade-generics are the drugs purchased at generic-only version price, but sold at branded generic price rate.
7. What are draft Drugs and Cosmetic Amendment Rules 2017?
These rules may be called the Drugs and Cosmetics (______Amendment) Rules, 2017 and are applicable for the labelling of a drug.
In the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945 (hereinafter referred to as the said rules), in rule 96, in sub-rule (1), in clause (i), in sub-clause (A), for the portion beginning with the words “For this purpose” and ending with the words “name and shall be”, the words “For this purpose, the proper name of the drug or fixed dose combination drug other than fixed dose combinations of vitamin and other fixed dose combinations containing three or more drugs, shall be printed or written in a conspicuous manner which shall be in the same font but at least two font size larger than the brand name or the trade name, if any, and in other cases the brand name or the trade name, if any, shall be written in brackets below or after the proper name and shall be” shall be substituted.
The above draft rules were put on public domain on 31st March 2014 for comments within 45 days. The very fact government is amending this clause means they have no plan to ban trade or branded generic drugs.
The very fact that the government is planning labeling change with chemical name in big font and brand name in brackets in small font, easier will be to write similarly in prescription the name of the salt in capital letters and the name of the brand in lower case in brackets.