Home / Health / Viagra goes generic: Pfizer to launch its own white pill

Viagra goes generic: Pfizer to launch its own white pill



TRENTON, N.J. – The little blue pill that helped millions of men in the bedroom is turning white. Pharmaceutical Pfizer is launching its own cheaper generic version of Viagra instead of losing most sales when the impotence pill gets its first generic competition next week.

Pfizer Inc. will start selling the white pill at half the retail price of $ 65 per pill on Monday, when its patent-protected monopoly ends. The generic manufacturer Teva Pharmaceuticals may start selling its version then, but it does not disclose the price.

Many more generics will go on sale next summer, which will constantly reduce the price of generics, possibly by 90 percent.

"Patients are paying fortunes, when generic Viagra comes out, they will be very happy," said Dr. Nachum Katlowitz, urologist at Staten Island University Hospital in New York.

Launched in 1

998, Viagra was the first impotence pill. It transformed a private frustration for many men who age in a publicly discussed medical condition with an easy treatment, much more attractive than options like penile injections and implants. The first Pfizer television ads for the blue pill even coined the term erectile dysfunction, ED for short.

Eli Lilly's Cialis came out in 2003 and now dominates the US market with pills on demand and low daily doses. Viagra is a close second.

Pfizer says that its market research shows that 20 percent of customers are Viagra loyalists. So, instead of giving up sales to generic manufacturers as manufacturers of branded drugs routinely do, the company is selling its own generic products and also struggling to keep men on their blue pills.

"We believe that Viagra's story is not made, it's going to be a new chapter," said Jim Sage, president of US brands for Pfizer Essential Health, which sells its older drugs.

In January, the pharmaceutical company will offer two new discount programs and increase its discounts on co-payment cards. Uninsured men can get brand name Viagra through an innovative online home delivery program, Pfizer Direct. Many insured patients will be able to get a one-month prescription, usually six to 10 pills, depending on the limits of the plan, for only a $ 20 copay.

"This is the most complete price and marketing response I've received. I've seen a generic, "said Erik Gordon, a pharmaceutical analyst at the business school at the University of Michigan. "It's unprecedented."

Gordon thinks that the reduced prices of Pfizer will retain some patients and will attract others who buy pills, often fakes, from the Internet.

Dr. Matthias Hofer, a urologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, said some of his insured patients who take Viagra would not want a generic. "They will be delighted if they can save money and get Pfizer's branded product," he said.

Last year, more than 12 million prescriptions for Viagra and Cialis were filled in the US UU., Generating a total of $ 3 billion in sales, according to health data and the clinical research company IQVIA. However, prescriptions have fallen more than 20 percent since 2012, as repeated price increases put the pills out of the reach of many men who lack good insurance.

According to health information analysis firm Elsevier, in the last ten years retail prices approximately $ 10 to $ 62 per pill for Viagra and from $ 11 to $ 61 for Cialis. Pharmacies and other intermediaries add a few dollars more per pill.

Generic Viagra, called sildenafil, will become even more affordable as of June 11, when more versions go on sale.

"Many patients already know that it is becoming generic and they want it," said Aracely Pena, medical assistant at San Diego Sexual Medicine.

Cialis and Levitra, another pill launched in 2003, get their own generic competition next fall. [19659002] Meanwhile, some doctors specializing in sexual dysfunction have found other options. Some prescribe Generic Revatio, the blood pressure pill that Pfizer was testing when older patients reported stronger erections as a side effect. It contains one fifth of the dose of sildenafil in Viagra and costs as little as $ 1 per pill.

Hofer of Northwestern organizes that his patients receive pills made by order of a pair of specialized pharmacies.

Daniel Lobello, 60, is satisfied with these pills but believes that many men would probably use generic or brand-name Viagra cheaper.

"It's great" that prices are falling, said the electrical inspector in West Chester, Illinois, "because it's something men need."

___

Follow Linda A. Johnson at https://twitter.com/ LindaJ_onPharma

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material can not be published, transmitted, rewritten or redistributed.


Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *