Why did Claritin get permission to go over the counter?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Van Patton, Dec 29, 2002.

  1. Van Patton

    Van Patton Second Unit

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    I do not understand why this medicine was allowed to go over the counter but other similiar drugs such as allegra are not. Anybody know?
     
  2. Daniel Swartz

    Daniel Swartz Second Unit

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    Intense lobbying of the FDA and Congress would be my best guess...
     
  3. Daniel Swartz

    Daniel Swartz Second Unit

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    The Who song used in their commercials didn't hurt either... [​IMG]
     
  4. Thi Them

    Thi Them Producer

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    I was in Sam's Club several days ago and was surprised to see Claritin on the shelf. Does anyone know how it compares to Benadryl?

    ~T
     
  5. Mark Schermerhorn

    Mark Schermerhorn Second Unit

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    It's far better than Benadryl. I use benadryl as a sleeping pill during allergy season. Claratin has no drowsy side effects (unless you take too much).
     
  6. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    Claritan has probably been around longer and/or has been prescribed more than the other drugs. The key to getting FDA approval to go over the counter is a huge database of clinical use with information on what percentage of users in the general population develop side-effects, etc. Congress does not regulate drugs, so lobbying them would be besides the point, and the FDA can't easily be lobbied by manufacturers. Most of the "lobbying" the FDA sees is from consumer and patient groups, usually asking them to shorten the clinical testing period for things like AIDS drugs that there is an urgent need for. One of the reasons that new prescription drugs are so costly in the U.S. and why they take longer to get to market is precisely that the FDA is extremely careful about these things and very resistant to industry pressure.

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  7. LDfan

    LDfan Supporting Actor

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    Benadryl has long been and will probably still will be the gold standard anti-histamine. Claritin doesn't have the drowsy side effects but I've never had much luck with it in the past.

    Jeff
     
  8. Blu

    Blu Screenwriter

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    I would say that the insurance companies have had a lot to do with Claritin being over the counter now. It will be much less expensive now that it is over the counter than in perscription form that the insurance companies don't have to pick up the tab for monthly scripts.
     
  9. Todd Hochard

    Todd Hochard Cinematographer

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    What Blu said. I imagine that the prescription card/insurance companies were certainly pushing for it. With it going OTC, now you have to pay for it, not them. I saw it at Target for $5.99 for FIVE tablets. Ouch. Quite a bit more than me paying $3 for a 90-day supply.

    I stopped taking it anyway. It seems to make my sinuses/throat raw after about two weeks of use.

    Todd
     
  10. Lee L

    Lee L Supporting Actor

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    In fact, Claritin was ruled by the FDA to go over the counter over the objections of the drug's maker. I can't remember exaclty but I think it was a combination of lobbying from insurance companies and patients rights group as Joe mentioned above.
     
  11. Danny R

    Danny R Supporting Actor

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    Once it goes OTC, the price has to drop in order for it to remain competative, because insurance no longer covers it. This means less money for the drug maker.

    I saw it at Target for $5.99 for FIVE tablets. Ouch. Quite a bit more than me paying $3 for a 90-day supply.

    Insurance of course don't want to pay for what they don't have to, so they are on the opposite side.

    As for patient groups, remember that not everyone has insurance. It cost an uninsured patient a LOT more than 5.99 for 5 tablets before going OTC. My own insurance would be something like $45 for a 90 day supply. ($15/month for name brand)
     
  12. Todd Hochard

    Todd Hochard Cinematographer

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    From a Google search, I've found that the "real" cost of Claritin as a prescription drug is anywhere from $1.75 to $3.00 per pill, depending on which website you look at.
    Interestingly, I came upon the fact that in the UK, it's about 41c each, due to price regulation.
    Personally, I'd like to see more effort placed into programs helping people eliminate the use of so much medication. But, where's the profit in that?[​IMG]
    Todd
     
  13. Shawn C

    Shawn C Screenwriter

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    I thought it was the fact that their patent was running out and every other drug manufacturer was going to start making it eventually..
     
  14. Michael St. Clair

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    Claritin could have gone over-the-counter years ago (like it is in Canada and many other countries). It is very safe. But the maker didn't want it to.
    The reason it is OTC now is that it will be available in generic form in a few months, and the generics will definitely be available OTC.
    So, in a panic, they went ahead and released Claritin OTC, hoping to build some brand loyalty before the generics come out.
    Me, I'll be buying the generics.
    Oh, and the reason Clarinex was created was to have a new patentable drug. I don't think there's any conclusive evidence that it actually works better.
     
  15. Cam S

    Cam S Screenwriter

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    Claritan has been available over the counter for years here in Canada, just like Michael said.
     
  16. Peter Kline

    Peter Kline Cinematographer

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    Many drugs start out as prescription and then eventually go over the counter. After years of use, the FDA reviews the history of the drug and then decides. Because a drug's patent terminates doesn't necessarily mean it will go over the counter. Allegra is also being reviewed for release over the counter. On a personal note (c sharp I think) Claritin makes me jumpy, Allegra does not.

    P.S. Happy New Year
     
  17. Joe McKeown

    Joe McKeown Stunt Coordinator

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  18. Max Leung

    Max Leung Producer

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    Just an FYI: The following allergy medications are available on the shelf (OTC) in Canada:
    Reactine (generic version is nearly half the price)
    Claritin (generic version has been out for a month)
    Allegra (generic may be available, but I'm not sure)
    Chlor-Tripolin (not sure of the spelling)
    Benadryl
    I'm sure there are a few others that I have forgotten. I do know that Seldane is prescription-only, after being OTC for many years before.
    I had taken Claritin for 5 years or more, but I've built up a resistance to it, and for the last 4 years I've been taking Reactine. Unfortunately, I must take an anti-histamine every day, which sucks because Reactine no longer controls my cat allergies, but still need it to keep other (more serious) symptoms down.
    I wish there is a medication that can stop smoke allergies, yet be safe to use with alcohol. No more bars and nightclubs for me. [​IMG]
     

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