Home Coronavirus Alarming Number Of Americans Feel Uninformed About Medication They’re Prescribed

Alarming Number Of Americans Feel Uninformed About Medication They’re Prescribed

Four in 10 Americans feel uninformed and have unresolved concerns after being prescribed a new medication, according to new research.

Results from a survey of 1,000 prescription-receiving Americans found 41 percent had unanswered questions after being given a prescription — with medication safety (53%), potential side effects (61%) and cost (54%) among the top concerns.

Conducted by OnePoll, survey results found 76 percent of respondents were not aware of other treatment options available to them and 37 percent feel they have little to no control over what is given to them at the pharmacy.

Not surprisingly, the majority of respondents (72%) have done their own research about prescriptions provided by their doctor.

In the U.S., 90 percent of the prescriptions filled are for generic medications, yet the distinction between authorized generics and generics is not always clear.

Most respondents (62%) understand that generics and authorized generics are less expensive versions of brand name medications, however 53 percent still have questions about the safety or efficacy of a generic versus a name-brand medication.

According to survey results, 70 percent of respondents did not know if they would be given a brand name medication, generic or authorized generic when filling a prescription.

Both authorized generics and generics are safe, effective and FDA-approved. According to the FDA, an authorized generic is an approved brand name drug that is marketed without the brand name on its label.

An authorized generic is the exact same drug product as the branded product, sometimes sold at a lower cost. In fact, almost all authorized generics are manufactured by the brand company in the same facilities as the brand product.

Generics, on the other hand, are copies of brand drugs made by a different company than the manufacturer of the brand name drug. They can be different in size, shape, smell, taste and feel – both compared to the brand and compared to other generic drugs.

Notably, only 37 percent of survey respondents were aware that authorized generics and brand name medications have an identical formula – and more than 70 percent did not know that authorized generics are not the same thing as generics.

And while some people know the difference, others said they can feel the difference. Survey results showed that 26 percent of respondents reported noticing a difference when switching from a name brand medication to a generic.

Research has shown that when a patient switches from a branded medicine to a generic medicine, there can be a drop in treatment adherence often due to the patient’s unfamiliarity with the generic drugs’ color, shape and size.

Furthermore, a survey of 500 prescribers revealed strong confidence in authorized generics – 64 percent said they would be more comfortable taking an authorized generic prescription drug produced by a brand-name company, rather than a copy of the drug produced by another company.

Authorized generics offer both patients and doctors a familiarity and predictability with the drug and how the patient will respond to it because it is the exact same formula as the branded drug. Because they use identical formulations, authorized generics will have the same effect, with the same benefits and potential side effects as the name-brand drug.

For more information, patients and health care practitioners can go to www.authorizedgenerics.com


  1. How long before they should see results: 48 percent
  2. Why the medication is the best option: 42 percent
  3. How to report any problems or side effects: 36 percent
  4. Whether they’ll receive a name-brand medication, generic or authorized generic at the pharmacy: 30 percent
  5. What the other potential options would be: 24 percent