VIEWS: 3 PAGES: 1 POSTED ON: 3/6/2011
How Pharmaceutical Companies Prevent Generics Being Produced? Once a patent has expired there should be very little to stop companies producing generic versions of the original drug. However companies invest a lot in developing new drugs so try to extend their exclusivity as long as possible in a process known as evergreening. They can in some cases apply for a 5-year extension to their patent to cover the time they spent developing and testing the drug and not actually producing and selling it. They can also apply for 180 days exclusivity as the first one to apply and be accepted to produce a generic version of the original drug. As well as this there is aggressive litigation against those who try to produce generic versions in an attempt to dissuade them; this is costly but not as costly as the 80% or so price drop of their product caused by additional competition. The most common method of evergreening is updating patents claiming some change in the product and effectively resetting the clock. Drug companies also patent every possible thing about their drug from the colour, size, shape, taste production method and even the form of compounds used to make it in order to make it difficult for a company to produce a generic which does not infringe these trademarks and patents.
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