Doctors should write generic (chemical) drug names and not use brand names in their prescriptions, the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan has advised.
In it letter to provincial health departments, DRAP said that complaints about prescription practices were received through the Prime Minister’s Performance Delivery Unit.
People raised concerns over “company-influenced, brand-based prescription of medicines” in government and private sectors, the letter said.
This burdens the country economically and puts patients under financial stress as branded medicines are much more expensive than commonly available generics, according to DRAP.
Generic medicines are a chemical copy of the original brand and contain the same active ingredients. They are cheaper and more readily available.
Prescribing expensive medicines under the influence of pharmaceutical companies is against the code of ethics of health practitioners, the regulator said.
“You are therefore requested to take necessary measures for promoting generic prescriptions by doctors and discourage the practice of incentivized prescription in the best interest of the patients and country,” it directed.