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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Drugs

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October 19: My husband has been on VESIcare for some time but our insurance has not labeled it as a tier 3 medicine. This means that we pay approximately $265 per month, which is a financial burden to me and my family. I wanted to know if VESIcare will be available in a generic form sometime soon.

CDER Director's Mailbag

While there are currently no generic VESIcare products available, companies can begin manufacturing generic versions of a drug after its patent expires and FDA approval is granted. However, new patents or other factors can extend the exclusivity period. 

I understand that drug prices have a direct impact on the ability of people to cope with their illnesses as well as meet other expenses. Unfortunately, FDA has no legal authority to investigate or control the prices charged for marketed drugs. Manufacturers, distributors and retailers establish these prices. And, of course other factors–including insurance coverage and drug pricing–can determine patient access to drugs. These factors have been receiving increasing public attention and public debate.

If you cannot afford your prescription medications, discuss your medication options with your health care provider to determine whether there is a lower-cost alternative. In addition, you can contact the drug manufacturer; some drug manufacturers have programs to help patients pay for needed medications.

Financial assistance is also provided to qualified individuals through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (cms.hhs.gov).