Analyzing the use and potential cost savings of generic drugs in Medicare Part D

The Foundation's Changes in Health Care Financing and Organization program was designed to support research, demonstration, and evaluation projects examining major changes in health care financing.The purpose of this project is to provide policy-makers with a better understanding of the forces that influence generic utilization and the potential opportunities to create health care cost savings within the Part D program. The researchers will examine the extent of generic drug use in Medicare's stand alone drug plans for three classes of drugs: cholesterol drugs, antidepressants, and hypertension drugs. They will determine whether plan-level benefit design and formulary design characteristics and the program's overall design are associated with the use of generics. Specifically, they will examine four research questions: (1) are shifts to generic alternatives within a drug class influenced by differences in benefit and formulary design; (2) does the impact of benefit and formulary design features differ between beneficiaries eligible for the Part D program's low-income subsidy and other unsubsidized beneficiaries; (3) do effects vary by drug and drug class; and (4) does the coverage gap design feature of the Part D program affect the use of generics? Deliverables will include a project work plan, a final narrative and financial report, and a final policy summary. The grantee will also produce paper(s) suitable for publication as part of the deliverables for this grant.

Grant Details

Amount Awarded $200,000.00

Awarded on: 3/19/2010

Time frame: 4/1/2010 - 9/30/2011

Grant Number: 67642


Georgetown University McCourt School of Public Policy Health Policy Institute

3300 Whitehaven Street, N.W., Suite 5000
Box 571444
Washington, 20057-0144


John F. Hoadley
Project Director


Laura L. Summer
Project Director