ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Choice of Best or Cheapest Drugs-A Note on Regulating Drug Supplies

Doctors must do the best for their patients an I demands to choose between prescription drugs on the basis of their relative prices can be met with a certain amount of indignation. The justification for this indignation rests on the tenet that in the absence of economic considerations the product chosen will be the clinically, optimal one. It will be the best product for that patient. It is further argued that if price was considered as relevant then the drug prescribed would be the best value for money, given the alternatives, rather than the best value for that patient in purely clinical terms. Thus many patients would be prescribed 'second best' or even 'third best' drugs and the doctor could no longer be seen us doing his very best for those patients. If the consideration of prices results in sub-optimal treatment, it follows that doctors can improve the health of their patients more by ignoring drug prices.

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