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Generic medicines saved US healthcare system nearly USD 240 billion in 2013

September 18, 2014 - The use of generic medicines saved US patients and payors a total of USD 239 billion in 2013 – an increase of 14% over 2012 and more than in any previous year.

That was the main finding of a new study by the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics, commissioned by the US Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPhA).

The latest study, details of which have just been released by GPhA, showed that the use of generics in the US saved a total of nearly USD 1.5 trillion over the past decade – more than the annual gross domestic product (GDP) of Spain, or nearly 10% of total US GDP.

The report says generic versions of nervous system and cardiovascular treatments lead the way, accounting for 58% of total savings over the past decade.

GPhA President and CEO Ralph Neas says savings due to the use of generics, which now account for well over 80% of all US prescriptions by volume, have played a critical role in driving reduced spending on federal healthcare programs over the past few years.

In August 2014, the US Congressional Budget Office (CBO) predicted that annual spending by Medicare and Medicaid, the two main federal healthcare programs in the US, would actually drop by several billions of dollars over the next decade.

“This track record of savings (from the use of generics) is unparalleled and the savings will grow substantially as we enter the era of biosimilars, the next frontier of generic industry innovation,” said Mr. Neas.