A Comparison of Generic and Originator Brand Drug Prices between Jordan and the United Kingdom

Faris El-Dahiyat, Reem Kayyali, Ibrahim Alabbadi


When a pharmaceutical patent expires, generic companies may enter the market and start selling copies of the original drug. As generic drugs contain exactly the same active ingredient, they are certified to be perfect substitutes to the originator branded drugs. In competitive markets, entry of generics would trigger fierce price competition, hence decreasing the monopoly enjoyed by the original patent holder.
The study aims at comparing the retail prices of generics and originator brand for five drugs between Jordan and the United Kingdom and to investigate the relation between the number of generics available, retail price of originator & generic (s) and the effect of time in the market on these prices.
Prices of originators and generics and the number of generics available in each market were obtained from the Jordanian Food and Drug Administration, Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, British National Formulary and Chemist & Druggist generics list. The prices were converted to British Pounds expressed per one dose unit. All data were tabulated in spreadsheets; prices were compared between the two countries at different preset times.
The generics of all drugs investigated appeared in the Jordanian market before the patent expiry of their originator worldwide due to lack of patency regulations in Jordan at the launch time of drugs under investigation (before 2004). Unlike the UK, the prices of originator drugs in Jordan did not change when the first generic was introduced to the market. The price of generic drugs has dropped dramatically in the UK at the time of the first generic launch approximately by 90% compared to 15% in Jordan. There was no apparent correlation between the numbers of generics available or the number of years of the first generic being in the market and the prices of the drugs investigated in both countries. The current prices of all investigated drugs in Jordan are higher than the UK particularly for the generics.
Although the income is much lower per capita in Jordan, generic drugs are more expensive than the equivalent prices of the same drugs in the UK.


Jordan, United Kingdom, Drug Prices, Originator, Generic

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