Choosing Generic Medications

Section Banner Image

Choosing Generic Medications

Are Generic Drugs Really as Good as Brand Names?

You might wonder if generic medications are as good as brand-name drugs. Like many, you might think that generic drugs are lower in quality and not as effective as brand-name drugs. This is not true. Generic drugs are:

  • Safe and effective - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) holds generic drugs to the same standard as their brand-name alternative. They must contain the same active ingredients, be equivalent in strength and dosage, and meet the same standards for safety, purity and effectiveness as the original brand-name product.
  • Equal quality - The FDA strictly regulates generic drugs just as they do with brand-name drugs. Before the FDA will approve a generic drug, it must pass a number of stringent tests and trials to ensure that is can be substituted in place of a specific brand-name drug.
  • Cost-effective - You save considerably more money when you choose generic drugs over brand-name drugs.
  • Commonly used - About 44 percent of all prescriptions in the U.S. are filled with generic medications.

The fact is, generic drugs work just as well as brand-name drugs, but cost less. And generic substitutions are available for many brand-name drugs. So when you need a new prescription, ask your doctor if a generic equivalent can be prescribed.


MHBP Generic Drug Incentive Program

You may be eligible for the Generic Drug Incentive program if you are currently taking a non-generic medication and switch to a generic replacement for that drug. If you qualify, you can receive a one-time, up to a 90-day supply of the generic drug at no cost to you from a network retail pharmacy or by mail order.  You will receive a letter from CVS Caremark if you qualify for this program.