Researchers explored the relationship between use of generic medication by older patients and physician specialty in the present article. A nationally representative sample of 1,828 adults age 66 and older comprised the study sample. Study participants had a history of coronary artery disease (CAD), congestive heart failure (CHF), or hypertension and had received care from a cardiologist or generalist. Data was taken from the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey (MCBS).
- A substantial majority of participants (80%) used at least one generic cardiovascular medication from at least one of five drug classes.
- Individuals under cardiologist care were less likely to use generic cardiovascular medication than were individuals who received care from generalists only.
- In the sample, generic thiazides were the drug class used most often (92%) with generic alpha-blockers used least often (47.7%).
- Study participants receiving cardiologist care used generic calcium channel blockers, ACE inhibitors and alpha-blockers less frequently (34%, 22% and 8%, respectively), than participants under generalist-only care.
- Physicians in all specialties could increase cost-conscious prescription with the use of generic medications.