There are no differences as far as quality, purity, effectiveness, and safety between generic drugs and higher-priced brand name drugs. Generic drugs are designed to work the same way in the body as the brand name version.

All drugs sold in Canada must be reviewed and approved by Health Canada and both generic and brand name drugs are subjected to the same rigorous standards.

It's in the price you'll see a big difference. Generic drugs cost much less on average.

The active ingredient (the chemical that makes the drug work) in a generic drug and the brand name version must be the same and meet the same scientific standards set by Health Canada.

The non-medicinal ingredients, such as fillers and preservatives, might differ between generic and brand name versions but all must come from a limited list of ingredients which are approved for use in pharmaceutical manufacturing.

Brand name companies are able to sell their medications for several years without generic competition which allows them to recoup the investment to bring the drug to market. Generic manufacturers do not have to pay for the initial research and development costs that the brand name company does.

Since the efficacy and safety of the brand drug has already been proven generic companies are only responsible for proving their product works the same as the brand name version. The lower investment to bring generic medications to the market allows for a lower price.

Yes, although a generic drug may have a different name and may look different, it works the same as the brand name drug.

Ask your doctor or your pharmacist. You may already be receiving a generic drug. If not, it may be because a generic equivalent of the drug prescribed by your doctor is not yet available. These health professionals can answer any questions about generic drugs.