Medicines will often have more than one name:
• a generic name, which features the active ingredient of the medicine
• a brand name, (everyday name) which is the trade name the manufacturer gives to the medicine.
The generic name is the official medical name for the active ingredient of the medicine.
The brand name is chosen by the manufacturer, usually on the basis that it can be recognised, pronounced and remembered by health professionals and members of the public.
Therefore this name for everyday medicines becomes generally accepted.
These medicines may differ from the familiar brand in taste or colour, but they work in the same way because they have the same active ingredient.
The NHS (National Health Service) best explains these generic (everyday medicines) drugs as follows:
We have chosen to feature the prices of generic medicines that are available at Tesco. Prices correct at time of writing.
The reason is that this store consistently offers the best prices on these particular items. However, most of the items listed below are also available from Boot’s, Sainsbury’s and Superdrug under their own branded names. Some show a considerable difference to the Tesco prices, but all are cheaper than the branded items.
Brand name: Panadol - pack of 16 tablets x 500 mg. tablets - Price £1.44 (9p. each)
Tesco Paracetamol tablets per pack - Price 15p. (1p. each)
Saving per pack £1.29
Brand name: Nurofen – pack of 16 x 200 mg. tablets - Price £1.43 (9p. each)
Tesco 16 x 200 mg. Ibuprofen tablets – Price 33p (2p. each)
Saving per pack £1.10
Brand name: Imodium – pack of six original capsules - Price £2.55 (42.5p each)
Tesco 6 x Diarrhoea relief capsules – Price 92p. (15p. each)
Saving per pack £1.63
Brand name: Zovirax cold sore cream – 2g. Tube - Price £6.49
Tesco Aciclovir cold sore cream 2g. - Price £2.94
Saving per tube £3.55
Brand name: Zirtek allergy relief tablets – pack of seven tablets - Price £2.30 (33p. each)
Tesco 14 x Hayfever and allergy relief tablets - Price £1.49 (11p. each)
Saving per pack 0.81p
You will see from the above the difference in prices of the everyday medicines and the branded medicines - in one case a massive £3.55 the difference this one little tip can make to your budget.
Whatever medication you are using it is always worth asking your pharmacist, in preference to an assistant, if there is a cheaper, generic (everyday medicine) version of the branded medicine you’re buying.
Some pharmacists are more cooperative than others,
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