when you walk down the medicine while in your local supermarket looking for a headache tablet, you will see named brands such as Panadol along with several alternatives – Herron and several generic brands.
This raises two questions – firstly, are they safe, and secondly, do they work as well as big-name brands?
The answer to both questions is yes. You can be sure that they are safe simply because any type of drug is very strictly controlled by the various regulatory authorities. Companies such as Coles and Woolworths are unable to put these products up for sale until they have jumped through many hoops, in terms of the composition and manufacture of the drugs, and in fact they have had to meet the exact same conditions as products like Panadol do.
and, in fact, there is a very good chance that they are exactly the same product anyway. This is how it works – company is like Coles and Woolworths don’t actually have any manufacturing facilities – they are all done under contract. And if you wanted someone to M headache tablets under contract, you would simply go to someone that was already making them. Makes sense, doesn’t it?
Now if you were Glaxo SmithKlineand you will work approached by a supermarket chain to manufacture headache tablets under contract, be easiest way to do it would be to simply supply then with V headache tablets that you were already manufacturing. In other words,if the generic brands contain 500 mg of paracetamol, just the same as the Panadol brand, and if V paracetamol is (obviously) going to be the most expensive component of the tablet, why would you bother coming up with a different formula for the supermarket chain?
Obviously, you wouldn’t. You would just repackage your own product for the supermarket chain. You wouldn’t make as much profit on these as you would on your premium brand, but you’d still make enough profit to making it worth your while.
I don’t know for a fact that this actually happens, mind you, but it is the most likely scenario.
So, because the drugs both contain the same active ingredient, they are both going to work just as well.
And, of course, the drug companies know this.that’s why when they advertise their products, they never have and authority figure telling you that their drugs work better than V generic brands – all they ever have is vox pop interviews with people on the street saying things like “oh, you know, I just trust Panadol.”
The “voice in the street” approach is meant to convince you, since it comes across as a spontaneous opinion (which it may well be), but the point is that no claims are being made about superior performance of the branded product.
So it’s clever marketing,but that’s all it is. Next time you need some headache tablets, go to Coles and by the generic brand for a third of the price of the Panadol. That way you won’t get a headache by paying too much!