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Medicare Part D Incurs Substantial Savings with Generics, CBO Says
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Dispensing generic drugs rather than their brand-name counterparts reduced prescription drug costs in the Medicare Part D by $33 billion in one year, according to a study by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). In 2007, the total payments to plans and pharmacies from the Part D program and its enrollees were about $60 billion, CBO said. The total number of prescriptions filled under Part D was about 1 billion—of which 65% were filled with generic drugs, 5% were filled with multiple-source brand-name drugs (which had generic versions), and 30% were filled with single-source brand-name drugs (for which no chemically equivalent generic versions were available).