August 28, 2008 |
Medicare overpaid for drugs that had generic versions because of a time lag in computing prices from when the cheaper medicines became available, the U.S. Health and Human Services Department's inspector general said. Payments for cancer drug irinotecan, sold by Pfizer Inc. as Camptosar, remained at more than double the average manufacturer's sales price after the generic version was cleared for sale Feb. 20, said the report, released Tuesday. Medicare, the health insurance program for the elderly and disabled, would have saved $6.5 million in March had it factored the generic price into its rate.
April 20, 2008 |
A cheaper, generic version of GlaxoSmithKline's Wellbutrin XL antidepressant is just as safe and effective as the original drug, despite complaints from some patients, the Food and Drug Administration said. The FDA said it received 85 reports from patients who switched from Wellbutrin XL to a cheaper generic by Teva Pharmaceutical Industries and Impax Laboratories Inc., including 78 who said they slipped back into depression. Agency scientists reviewed versions of the two drugs and found the data did not show the problems stemmed from any differences between them.
February 22, 2008 |
Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc. won clearance to sell the first generic version of Pfizer Inc.'s cancer drug Camptosar. The Food and Drug Administration approved Watson's generic irinotecan hydrochloride after patents on the brand-name drug expired. Corona-based Watson said it was entitled to 180 days of market exclusivity before the FDA could approve another generic.
February 6, 2008 |
Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc. will begin shipping generic versions of Merck & Co.'s osteoporosis drug Fosamax. Merck will make and supply the drug and receive a share of the profit in the U.S., Corona-based Watson said. Sales of Fosamax dropped 3% to $3 billion last year, Whitehouse, N.J.-based Merck reported Jan. 30. The drug is expected to lose market exclusivity at the close of business today, according to Watson.
September 28, 2007 |
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. added 24 prescriptions to a list of $4 generic drugs to lure more customers into its pharmacies and said it would consider a 90-day prescription program.
April 24, 2007 |
The first generic versions of insomnia drug Ambien won federal approval. The Food and Drug Administration said it approved versions of the tablets made by 13 drug companies for the short-term treatment of insomnia. A patent held by Paris-based Sanofi-Aventis on the drug, also called zolpidem tartrate, expired Saturday.