Navigation Links
Study finds statin costs 400 percent higher in US compared to UK

(Boston) -- In the United States, the cost paid for statins (drugs to lower cholesterol) in people under the age of 65 who have private insurance is approximately 400 percent higher than comparable costs paid by the government in the United Kingdom (U.K.). These findings, from the Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) Boston Collaborative Drug Surveillance Program, are the first results of a comprehensive comparison of prescription drug costs between the U.S. and U.K. The study appears on-line in the journal Pharmacotherapy.

Expenditures for prescription drugs remain a large part of the ongoing debate on the costs of medical care in the U.S. and U.K. Because of the many complex and interactive variables that contribute to these costs, well-defined estimates of the actual and relative usage and costs for the two countries have not been reliably documented.

Data for this study came from two large electronic medical databases, one in each country. Costs were derived from private health insurance claims in the U.S., while the costs were originated from a general practice research database constructed in 1990 in the U.K.

The study is based upon a 2005 sample of 280,000 people age 55-64 in each country. Statins were prescribed to an estimated 32.7 percent of people in the U.S. and 24.4 percent in the U.K. In the U.S. the estimated annual cost of statins ranged from a high of $1,428 for simvastatin (generic unavailable), to a low of $314 for lovastatin (available in generic formulation). In the U.K. the annual cost varied from a high of $500 for atorvastatin (generic not available), to a low of $164 for simvastatin (available in generic). The estimated cost per pill was at least twice as high for each statin prescribed in both countries.

When the annual cost for each annual statin user together with the number of users were combined, the total estimated cost for statin users was $69.5 million in people covered by private insurance companies in the U.S. The total estimated annual cost for statin users covered by the government in the U.K. was $15.7 million.

"In addition to differences in overall statin use and per unit costs, another significant factor contributing to the disparity of costs appears to be the availability and utilization of generics," said lead author Hershel Jick, MD, Director Emeritus of BUSM's Collaborative Drug Surveillance Program and associate professor of medicine at BUSM.

According to the researchers, simvastin was approved in the U.S. for sale in generic formulation in late June 2006. Accordingly, within the next six months more than 60 percent of users switched from the brand preparation to the generic. The resultant estimated cost was reduced more than 60 percent. According to the researchers, however, it still was four times higher than that in the U.K.

Contact: Gina DiGravio
Boston University Medical Center

Related medicine news :

1. Drug Eases Gout Flare-ups in Some Patients: Study
2. Study Reveals Whos More Prone to Be a Mean Drunk
3. Kaiser Permanente study finds continuous health coverage essential for patients managing diabetes
4. Safety-First Playgrounds Linked to Bored, Inactive Kids: Study
5. U-M study shows updated rotavirus vaccine not linked to increase in bowel obstruction
6. U.S. Heart Attack Patients Readmitted Most Often: Study
7. Nap-deprived tots may be missing out on more than sleep, says University of Colorado-led study
8. Womens Sexual Satisfaction Often Rises With Age: Study
9. BINGO! game helps researchers study perception deficits
10. Genetic predisposition to disease common in 2 supercentenarians: New study
11. Study Looks at Deep Brain Stimulation in Bipolar Patients
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Pixel Film Studios Released ... , "Film editors can give their videos a whole new perspective by using the ... CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProSlice Levels contains over 30 Different presets ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Experts from the American Institutes ... Research Meeting June 26-28, 2016, at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. , ... advance care planning, healthcare costs and patient and family engagement. , AIR researchers ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 25, 2016 , ... First Choice Emergency Room , the largest network ... the Medical Director of its new Mesquite-Samuell Farm facility. , “We are pleased ... location,” said Dr. James M. Muzzarelli, Executive Medical Director of First Choice Emergency Room. ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Conventional wisdom preaches the benefits of moderation, whether it’s a ... the bar too high can result in disappointment, perhaps even self-loathing. However, those who ... , Research from reveals that behind the tendency to set ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... in a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. Prone to extreme mood ... something upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. “If there was a ... children and say he was going to kill them. If we were driving on ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 , , , ... 7, 2016 , , , , LOCATION: , , , ... , , , EXPERT PANELISTS:  , , , Frost & Sullivan,s ... Christi Bird; Senior Industry Analyst, Divyaa Ravishankar and Unmesh Lal, Program ... global pharmaceutical industry is witnessing an exceptional era. Several new demand ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016  Astellas today announced the establishment of Astellas Farma Colombia (AFC), a new affiliate with operations headquartered in ... America . ... ... ... ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016  Guerbet announced today that ... Supplier Horizon Award . One of ... was recognized for its support of Premier members through ... clinical excellence, and commitment to lower costs. ... this recognition of our outstanding customer service from Premier," ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: