7 doctors weighed in:

Many drugs are offered via both prescription and OTC (i.e. Esomeprazole 20mg). I am aware they technically have different indications or directions per the label, but why are doctors still highly prescribing these drugs if they are available OTC?

7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Andrea Brand
Family Medicine
2 doctors agree

In brief: OTC, Rx cost

Often the decision to recommend an OTC ( over the counter) medication or write a prescription for the same medication depends on out of pocket cost to the patient.

In brief: OTC, Rx cost

Often the decision to recommend an OTC ( over the counter) medication or write a prescription for the same medication depends on out of pocket cost to the patient.
Dr. Andrea Brand
Dr. Andrea Brand
Thank
Dr. Allan Mottram
Emergency Medicine
2 doctors agree

In brief: Same Medication

Whether OTC or prescribed, they are the same medication.
Sometimes the meds will be covered by insurance when prescribed, but not when bought over the counter.

In brief: Same Medication

Whether OTC or prescribed, they are the same medication.
Sometimes the meds will be covered by insurance when prescribed, but not when bought over the counter.
Dr. Allan Mottram
Dr. Allan Mottram
Thank
Dr. Philip Miller
Family Medicine
2 doctors agree

In brief: Most OTC meds

are lower dose preparations of the brand dose.
Higher doses are available on Rx.

In brief: Most OTC meds

are lower dose preparations of the brand dose.
Higher doses are available on Rx.
Dr. Philip Miller
Dr. Philip Miller
Thank
Dr. Georgia Latham
Family Medicine

In brief: Primarily cost

OTC forms tend to be more expensive, especially if the patient has any insurance coverage for prescription medications.
It is not common for insurance companies to cover OTC medications. After a medication has been available OTC for a while (months-years) insurance companies often stop providing any coverage for that medication, even if prescribed.

In brief: Primarily cost

OTC forms tend to be more expensive, especially if the patient has any insurance coverage for prescription medications.
It is not common for insurance companies to cover OTC medications. After a medication has been available OTC for a while (months-years) insurance companies often stop providing any coverage for that medication, even if prescribed.
Dr. Georgia Latham
Dr. Georgia Latham
Thank
1 comment
Dr. Anne Phelan-adams
Many state medicaid plans cover the cost of OTC medications, particularly those that don't have a prescription variant. Tylenol (acetaminophen( is a good example of a OTC medication that low income people on medicaid can get with a doctor's prescription.
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