Will the Down Economy Herald the Use of Natural Medicine?
November 15, 2008
For the first time in a decade or more, U.S. consumers are trying to get by on fewer prescription drugs. As people around the country respond to financial hard times, drugs are sometimes having to wait.
The drug giant Pfizer, which makes Lipitor, the world’s top-selling prescription medicine, said U.S. sales of that drug were down 13 percent in the third quarter of this year. And although the overall decline in total prescriptions was less than 1 percent, it represents the first downturn after more than a decade of steady increases in prescriptions. From 1997 to 2007, the number of prescriptions filled increased 72 percent.
In some cases, the cutbacks might not hurt. According to Gerard F. Anderson, a health policy expert at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, “A lot of people think there’s probably over-prescribing in the United States.”