Prescription switching... is it safe? - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Prescription switching... is it safe?

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By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - When you pick up your prescription at the drug store, are you getting what you expect? Many pharmacists and doctors will offer patients a generic version of their medicine that's chemically the same but cheaper than the brand name. But there's also a something called therapeutic substitution. That's when a drug determined to work the same is substituted without contacting the doctor or in some cases letting the patient know.

Pharmacists in Albany say you should always know what drug you are being prescribed. If it's not what you expect, ask questions. Pharmacist Ashley Kunkle said, "Anytime a patient has a question about their drug therapy, they should definitely ask their Doctor about it or ask their pharmacist about any change in their drug therapy."

Pharmacy Student Amy Ellis said, "If they were unaware of what they were taking or unaware that there was supposed to be a change that should definitely alert the pharmacist as well as the patient that something needs to be checked on."

One of the reasons therapeutic substitution may be used is to save insurance companies and maybe the patient money on the prescription.

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