Case Management

CMW News: Health insurance companies urge physicians to prescribe generic drugs

Case Management Weekly, November 5, 2008

In the past, drug companies have been criticized for encouraging physicians to prescribe their drugs to patients by offering free samples and monetary incentives to physicians. Now, it seems, the reverse is happening.

Some health insurance companies are offering physicians a portion of the savings they get each year when patients use generic drugs instead of their brand-name counterparts, according to The Houston Chronicle. Small savings, such as 50 cents per patient, per month, could add up to thousands of dollars yearly.

Several states are looking to regulate relationships between physicians and insurance companies to make sure the medication prescribed is in the best interest of the patient.
The American Medical Association warned last year that the bonuses physicians received from insurance companies were much like kickbacks, and physicians who accepted a bonus for switching a patient from a brand name to a generic medication could face criminal and civil liability.

Source: The Houston Chronicle

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