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Table 2 Reasons why the dispenser does not inform the customer about the least expensive interchangeable product at the point of dispensing (n = 397)

From: The content of patient counseling about interchangeable medicines and generic substitution in Finnish community pharmacies - a survey of dispensers

FactorsPercent of cases % (n) a
Small price difference between the least expensive and other interchangeable medicinal products68.3 (271)
The least expensive interchangeable product is not available at the community pharmacy or from the pharmaceutical wholesaler51.9 (206)
The customer has been using the same preparation for a shorter or longer period of time26.7 (106)
Attributable to the customer (difficulty understanding the substitution, memory disorder, possible risk of confusing the substituted preparations)16.6 (66)
The customer has previously declined the substitution, or the customer wishes to have the same preparation as before or the one prescribed by his/her physician13.4 (53)
There are other interchangeable products available in the reference price band4.3 (17)
The customer needs to have the medicine at once (e.g. antibiotics)3.8 (15)
Work pressure in the pharmacy2.5 (10)
The person purchasing the prescription is not the user of the medicine2.5 (10)
Substitution does not affect the cost to the customer (e.g. full reimbursement, private insurance company, social assistance certificate)2.5 (10)
Otherb10.3 (41)
  1. arespondents could give several reasons in the situation
  2. be.g. the customer does not ask for the cheapest product, the customer cannot get reimbursement for the cheapest product, medicine prices/reference price band has changed recently