Blog | Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Americans taking fewer drugs

According to stats from IMS Health Inc., prescriptions dropped almost 2% in the second quarter of this year compared to the year before. The lede of this Philly Inquirer article attributes the drop to economic problems, but also cites several other potential causes of the first drop in drug sales since 1996:
  • fewer new drugs being introduced
  • heavy publicity for some nasty side effects (e.g. rosiglitazone)
  • a slowdown in FDA approvals

Physician visits were also down 1.2%. But medical workers shouldn't worry about unemployment quite yet, experts said. The American population is still expected to get older and sicker in the future, so we can expect business to pick back up. What a relief.