The price of pills: A tale of two countries and their statin markets


According to Boston University's Boston Collaborative Drug Surveillance Program — as well as others involved in an ongoing effort to compare prescription costs between the United States and the United Kingdom — the costs accrued for statins (medication that lowers cholesterol) in people under the age of 65 who use private insurance in the US continues to exceed the amount put forth by the UK government threefold. 

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"The cost of prescription drugs incur a tremendous burden to the U.S. economy, whether paid by private insurance companies through higher insurance premiums or paid by the government that provides this service for the military, other government employees, the elderly and others," wrote Hershel Jick, MD, director emeritus of the Collaborative Drug Surveillance Program and associate professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine, in the study’s accompanying editorial. "Information on a substantial majority of drugs, including those prescribed primarily for children, can be derived from these continuous reliable electronic data resources. They yield critical insight into the difference in drug costs between the U.S. private sector compared to the U.K. government that can lead to creation of policy that provides greater efficiency and large cost savings."

View the infographic below for an interactive, in-depth display of the program's latest comparison.  

Click to enlarge.

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Sources: Boston University’s Boston Collaborative Drug Surveillance Program latest results published in the journal 'Pharmacotherapy.' Design & Composition: PhysBizTech. [See also: Infographic: Why America must address the rising costs of healthcare]

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