Brand Versus Generic Dispensing Trend for Ciprofloxacin 500 mg, Levofloxacin 500 mg and Moxifloxacin 400 mg (oral dosage forms) Among Pharmacies of Karachi, Pakistan
Introduction: Pakistan spends 0.7% of its gross domestic product on health. The public sector health-care system provides services to 22% of population thus paving the way for a dominant private sector. Patients in Pakistan mostly pay their medical expenses directly and 64% of the health expenditures are borne by the household. Expenditure on medicine constitutes 43% of the total household expenditure. Methods: A quantitative cross-sectional study was conducted in Karachi, Pakistan, for a month. It was aimed at gathering response from different pharmacies to understand the brand versus generic dispensing trend of ciprofloxacin 500 mg, levofloxacin 500 mg and moxifloxacin 400 mg oral dosage forms. The study employed convenience sampling and used a survey checklist. The data gathered was entered in SPSS version 22. Results: The mean price per tablet for ciprofloxacin brand and generic was reported at Pakistani Rupees (PKR) 48.44 and PKR 26.85, respectively. The trend for dispensing ciprofloxacin highlighted a split in the market between brand (51%) and generic (49%). For levofloxacin brand and generic, the price per tablet was reported at PKR 36.50 and PKR 36.15 respectively and despite same price, the market was dominated by generic levofloxacin (92%). Due to a price difference between brand and generic moxifloxacin, i.e., PKR 129.44 and PKR 71.91, respectively, the market was mostly occupied by the generic form (75%). Conclusion: Pricing mechanism must be revisited and the authorities should take stern actions against any illegitimate price hike. The surging burden of drug expenditure on poorer sections of the society must be addressed by the government on an urgent basis.