Generic vs Branded Medicines: What’s the Difference?
When it comes to medication, there has been a long-standing debate regarding the benefits and drawbacks of generic drugs as opposed to branded ones.
While some believe that generic medicine is the wiser option, others are quick to distrust drugs that are not produced by reputed pharmaceutical manufacturers.
To limit confusion regarding which one is better, one must first understand how to distinguish between generic and branded drugs.
Assessing what they are and how they affect your body after consumption is the simplest way to determine the better option to pursue.
What is a branded medicine?
Branded medications are those, which are patented to a certain manufacturer. These companies spend millions to research and develop such medicine, after years of laboratory testing.
The formula for the drug is patented only after it clears clinical trials and is ready to be launched in the consumer market.
Branded medicines generally carry a nomenclature, and are not advertised by their chemical composition. Instead, they retail under a name chosen by the manufacturer for marketing purposes.
Moreover, these drugs tend to be costlier since companies spend years perfecting the formula. Thus, substantial expenses are involved in bringing such a medicine to the shelves.
The high pricing ensures that the parent company can profit, even after considering the high overhead, R&D, and manufacturing expenses.
What is a generic medicine?
Generic drugs are those medications, which are identical to branded drugs in their composition, effect, and mechanism of action.
However, generic medicine can only be created when its branded counterpart’s patent has expired. Thus, the original formula no longer belongs to one company alone but is instead available to all.
A generic medicine does not have a separate name as a branded one does. Instead, it is identified by its chemical composition.
When an individual wants a particular generic drug, he/she would need to mention the composition to the chemist, who can then provide the same to the customer.
Unlike a branded drug, generic medicine is inexpensive. The root cause of this substantial price difference between the two is that generic medicine manufacturers do not have to research for years to come up with a working formula to cure a certain condition or disease.
Instead, they only need to wait for patents of popular branded drugs to expire, so that they can start manufacturing a similar medication by just using this existing formula.
Therefore, due to the limited manufacturing expenses, such drugs are always cheaper than the drugs offered by reputed brands.
Generic or branded medicine: What should you choose?
Whether one chooses branded or generic drugs for treatment largely depends on his/her attending physicians.
If your doctor favors generic medications, you may rely on the same as well and vice versa.
While generic medications are certainly cheaper, you must opt for drugs that offer optimal quality.
If the question is about developmental and manufacturing standards, most individuals tend to choose branded drugs.
It is also not pertinent to let the price of medication be the deciding factor for purchasing them.
Bajaj Finserv Digital Health EMI Network Card owners, for instance, can avail quality treatment without worrying about the associated expenses.
The health card and its many benefits
The health card is a unique financial tool that allows one to boost the affordability of a plethora of healthcare services.
Along with therapy and surgery coverage, this card also helps you acquire the desired branded or generic medicine without overburdening your finances.
While one can pay their immediate medical liabilities using the health card, they can choose to repay the outstanding sum on their cards through EMIs over a tenor of up to 24 months.
Therefore, one can effectively convert their medical bills into monthly installments, making it easier on their pockets.
Apart from this feature, the Digital Health EMI card provides a range of other benefits as well –
- Substantial pre-sanctioned limit – Eligible applicants can avail health cards with pre-approved limits of up to Rs.4 lakh. This considerable sum should allow one to avail of almost any treatment procedure without incurring financial burden.
- Family-wide coverage – When you apply for a health card, it is not just you who receives the various benefits from the same. Instead, you can use this card to avail treatment for any of your family members as well, including your spouse, children, and parents.
- Support for most treatments – Once can enjoy the card’s benefits for over 800 treatment procedures in more than 5500 medical facilities across India. Cardholders can even pay for cosmetic treatments and surgeries with this financial product. This is especially beneficial since most health insurance policies exclude cosmetic procedures from their coverage.
- Zero documentation process – Existing Bajaj Finserv EMI Network members can avail this health card without submitting even a single document. They can apply online, pay the requisite one-time purchase fee of Rs.589 or Rs.707 for the non-insta and insta variants of the card, and access its benefits at the earliest. This hassle-free process can go a long way in reducing application time during a medical emergency.
Cardholders can also take advantage of the various discounts and offers at select outlets from over 1000 cities across India. Check the official website to know more about where these offers are currently available.