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Americans are top spenders on prescription drugs

Americans, in some cases, spend more than double that of other developed nations on prescription drugs.
(ABC) -- Americans, in some cases, spend more than double that of other developed nations on prescription drugs.

In a study published in Health Affairs, the OECD nations - Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom were compared with the United States.

The U.S. is outpacing all other nations in both retail and manufacturer drug pricing, and we spend more than double per capita on brand-name prescription drugs than the UK, the lowest spender.

The UK had the lowest prices in all years examined.

The authors say the US is quicker to try new, more expensive drugs, and take more of them. They recommend the FDA to consider cost-effectiveness when approving drugs. But, negotiated discounts on prices that are often obtained in the United States --for instance, through insurance plans -- were not fully reflected in the study.

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