You can’t keep a good drug down

With generic Zocor (simvistatin) now on the market, payers are trying to take a chunk out of Lipitor (atorvastatin calcium) sales in the statin market. It’s not working as well as some had hoped. That’s because Lipitor is widely regarded as the best drug in the statin class –further evidence that not all follow-on drugs in a class should be dismissed as “me-too” products.

It’s still worthwhile for payers to push Zocor, even if the results are modest. Statins are a big expense for health plans, so even small share shifts are valuable. Plus even if Lipitor sales hold up, other statins such as Crestor (rosuvastatin calcium) and Vytorin (ezetimibe and simvastatin) may prove more vulnerable.

April 11, 2007

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