Monday, November 20, 2006

Generic drug pricing news

When Walmart announced last September its $4 price for roughly 300 generic drugs at Tampa St. Petersburg Florida pharmacy, Target offered to match Walmart's price. (B.J's Warehouse Stores adopted the same policy.) Since then Walmart has expanded its $4 pricing program to 75% of its 3900 U.S. pharmacies.

Today, Target announced that it has expanded its $4 pricing program to all 1,287 of its U.S. pharmacies. Business Insurance noted that "It was not immediately clear which generic drugs were on Target's list. Previously, the discount retailer had matched the list of drugs being sold for $4 at Wal-Mart. * * * Wal-Mart has also added more drugs to its list, such as pravastatin, a generic form of Bristol-Myers Squibb's cholesterol drug Pravachol."

I wondered why I was paying CVS $11 for a 20 day supply of the over the counter antihistamine Loratadine (brand name Claritin). I hopped on the internet and an Amazon supplier selling 150 tablets (same 10 mg dosage) for $9.95 plus $5.95 shipping. Maybe there is something to this pricing transparency concept.

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