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Pharmacists' Attitudes and Practices Regarding Generic Drugs

The role of pharmacists has changed from that of one who compounds and dispenses drugs and medications to one who may have responsibilities for preventive health care, medication review, providing information on the wise use of medications and medication management.

This is the third in a series of studies examining attitudes and practices regarding the use of generic drugs. Where the first two examined consumers’ views and physicians’ perspectives, this study focuses on pharmacists, specifically investigating…

  • their opinions about the use of generic drugs, their sources of information about generics, and their experience with them
  • interactions with pharmacy customers and how prepared they feel they are to respond to their questions
  • the importance of information regarding the comparative effectiveness of drugs to treat specific conditions and whether the new Medicare drug benefit should promote the use of generics

Pharmacists and their customers, the study finds, could benefit from having more information to understand and compare the costs of prescription drugs. This may be even more important with the Medicare prescription drug benefit’s 2006 implementation.

Data for this study were collected online from a panel of pharmacists who completed a self-administered questionnaire between May 9th and May 19th, 2005. Among the 502 respondents, approximately 70 percent represent chain or grocery pharmacies, and 30 percent represent independent pharmacies. Further information about this research may be obtained by contacting Dr. Barrett, the report’s author, at 202-434-6197. (39 pages)

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