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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 18-22

Consumers' perceptions on generic medicines in Taif city, Saudi Arabia

Department of Clinical Pharmacy, College of Pharmacy, Taif University, Taif, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Ahmed Abdulrahman Albarraq
Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Pharmacy Practice Research Unit, College of Pharmacy, Taif University
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2278-0521.112626

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Context: The increased use of generic medicines has been associated with remarkable cost saving and is one of several strategies aimed to reduce pharmaceutical expenditure. Aims: To identify consumers' perceptions on generic medicines. Settings and Design: A cross-sectional survey was conducted during April-June 2011 in Taif City in Saudi Arabia. Materials and Methods: Adult consumers (aged >18 years) were recruited. Data were collected by face-to-face interview using a pre-tested questionnaire. Statistical Analysis Used: Associations between different variables were tested by using Chi-square tests or Fisher exact tests when appropriate. All statistical tests were conducted at an a priori significance level of P < 0.05 using Statistical Product and Service Solutions (SPSS) version 16. Results: Overall; 450 participants were recruited (males were 78.4% and 77.8% their ages were <40 years). Higher education graduates were 245 (54.4%) and those who were practicing non-medical jobs were 326 (72.4%). Participants who preferred using brand medicines over generic ones were 282 (62.7%). Preference of using brand over generic medicines increased significantly with consumers' age (≤40 years, 210 (60.3%); 40-60 years, 63 (72.4%); >60 years, 6 (75.0%)); (P = 0.015). Interviewees who did not prefer using generic medicines because of their low prices compared to brand ones were 223 (51.8%). Participants who believed that generic medicines have low efficiency compared to brand ones were 176 (39.1%). Respondents who thought that generic medicines have more side effects than brand ones were 110 (24.4%). Conclusions: The results showed general unawareness on generic medicines and generic substitution. No single variable was found to be associated with consumers' knowledge on generic medicines.

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