November 2, 2021

Pfizer launches generic Viagra after patent expires – Quartz

All good things come to an end, including the exclusive to Pfizer’s precious little blue pill.

On December 11, some companies that make generic pills will be allowed to start selling their own versions of Pfizer’s Viagra, and the New York-based drug company clings to its potent pill with all its might. Rather than allowing other companies to dominate the generic market, Pfizer is launching its own generic Viagra, reports AP, which will sell for just $ 32.50 a pill, half the usual price of $ 65. Also on the 11th, Teva Pharmaceuticals is set to release a generic version of the pill, just like Mylan, but the cost of these drugs is unknown.

Under US patent law, drug makers get 20 years of exclusive market rights to sell their pills. Technically, Viagra’s patent is valid until 2020, but generic manufacturers have the right to challenge the patents. While a generics company can prove that a patent is somehow obvious or unoriginal, it can sometimes get the right to sell generic versions before a patent actually expires. Teva and Mylan have remained tight-lipped on the details of how they came to challenge this patent, which may retain their own brief generic exclusivity. The AP reports that several other companies are expected to launch generics in the summer of 2018, which could reduce the price by up to 90%.

Since Viagra hit the market in 1998, it has been used by 62 million men around the world, a spokesperson previously told Quartz. It had a drastically bullish effect on prescription drug prices at the time, becoming an instant hit. Its biggest competitor has been Cialis, which is a daily erectile dysfunction pill launched by Eli Lilly in 2003, although there have also been a lot of counterfeits circulating. In 2016, Viagra had a market share of around 45%.

According to the AP, Pfizer market researchers believe about 20% of its customers will still buy branded pills, even with cheaper generics available. He also plans to start selling these prescriptions at the same discounted price as these generics to uninsured patients through Pfizer’s online portal, and for as little as $ 20 in men’s stores with some insurance plans.

Inevitably, Pfizer will eventually lose its grip on the erectile dysfunction market. But for now, the company is holding out with all its might.


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