Do free or low-cost antibiotic promotions alter prescription filling habits?

Jeremy Joslin, Susan M. Wojcik, Andrew Fisher, William D. Grant
2014 Pharmacy Practice  
Objective: Because free sample of prescription medications have been shown to influence prescribing habits of physicians, we sought to discern if promotional efforts of a retail pharmacy influenced prescriptions filled in our county after a free antibiotic program was initiated. Methods: Retrospective analysis of prescription antibiotics filled throughout the county was performed. Prescriptions filled during the first 6 months of the year before the program was initiated were compared to
more » ... compared to prescriptions filled during the first 6 months of the year immediately following initiation of the promotion. Results: A total of 436,372 antibiotic prescriptions were dispensed during that time. The number of antibiotics filled that were included in the promotion increased by 13.4% while the number of antibiotics filled that were excluded from the promotion decreased by 20.4%. Conclusion: These data suggest that the promotional pricing of the antibiotics had a significant impact on the number of prescriptions filled in each category. Because a prescription written does not always equate to a prescription filled, further investigation is needed to confirm the relationship between these promotions and actual prescriber habits.
doi:10.4321/s1886-36552014000300003 fatcat:qfa2x43uifhgjaq4fzjeaes7nm