Prescription Drugs in Vietnam?

Apr 26th, 2004, 05:46 AM
  #1  
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Prescription Drugs in Vietnam?

I was surprised to find Celebrex and Levothyroxin almost half price in Switzerland. Is this also true in Vietnam?
bajaflash is offline  
Apr 26th, 2004, 08:07 AM
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i can't speak for the price on specific drugs, but generally they are very cheap, if available...you do not generally need a prescription...you just buy them
rhkkmk is offline  
Apr 26th, 2004, 10:19 AM
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In India I once purchased antibiotic ear drops OTC for 25 cents. Yes, I do mean cents. There is alot available OTC in 3rd world countries w/o prescriptions and the cost is a fraction of what it is in the US and Europe.
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Apr 26th, 2004, 02:05 PM
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Might be a little off the thread, but I'd be interested to know what Americans do typically pay for prescription drugs. Here in Australia, drugs listed for the pharmaceutical benefits scheme are capped at about $22 (US$16), with people on social security payments (aged and invalid pensioners, unemployed, students) paying I think $3.20 (about US$2.30). There's also an annual cap on total outlays. I've heard that prices in the US are sky-high, so bajaflash, you might have an opportunity to stock up in Vietnam!
Neil_Oz is offline  
Apr 26th, 2004, 03:26 PM
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As an example I just purchased 30 tabs of ambien, a sleep aid. With my insurance I paid $14.00. Without it it would have been $108.50! Yes, it is very high here and one has to hope he is under the umbrella of a good insurance plan.
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May 1st, 2004, 01:17 PM
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We bought some allergy medication for my husband in Vietnam last year. Just use caution, 3 out of 4 we bought didn't work.
anna_k is offline  
May 1st, 2004, 01:51 PM
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The US is the worst for medical service of any first world country. While the care can be excelent, if you are covered by your company or private insurance, otherwise the option is for people to go to their individual State insurance coverage. Unfortunately, in this latter situation, many people make too much money to qualify - in other words their just not poor enough.

As far as what is done for seniors, especially those with limited incomes - well,there is not coverage, until the new drug plan kicks in soon and that drug plan is even a sorrier situation. Most seniors can do better with the drug plans offered by their own States. So is it any wonder that many seniors (and others) purchase their pharmaceuticals from Mexico or Canada.

So "bajaflash" if you find what you need in Vietnam, go for it - but I hope you're not buying sugar pills/capsules. One never knows!
 
May 1st, 2004, 04:30 PM
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No, you never know. A friend of mine working in Vietnam was excited to find a bottle of Johnny Walker Black Label at an unbelievable price and was only saved form buying it by reading on the otherwise impeccable label, "Made in Scotchland".

The US spends a high percentage of its GDP on health care - over 13% to our 9% - but the outcomes don't seem to be at all commensurate. Where does all the money go? Maybe a small clue lies in the fact that the Australian pharmaceutical benefits scheme restrains drug companies' margins, e.g. by refusing to pay more for new drugs that don't do any more than the superseded version. The companies have this scheme in their sights, maybe because in their eyes it and others like it set a dangerous example for other countries - maybe even the US itself. This was made clear in recent negotiations over a US-Australia free trade agreement. While the companies didn't get all they wanted they made some inroads, with the result that the FTA is facing difficulty in the Australian Senate.

The drug companies will be one of the most formidable opponents that Americans looking for a fairer and more efficient health system will have to deal with.
Neil_Oz is offline  
May 2nd, 2004, 09:29 AM
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As others have noted, prescription drugs can be inexpensive in SE Asia - they can also be fake. In one sudy done, (looking at anti-malarials available in SE Asia) one third of the drugs purchased by travelers were fake. So exercise caution in buying medications. You want to make sure that you are getting the real medication and that the medication has not expired. Your best bet is to buy from a reputable pharmacy (those affiliated with hospitals appear to be more relaiable) and always check the expiration date on the medication. That is easily done on unit doses, but bulk-supplied pills or caps will require that you ask to see the large container from which the medication was taken.

(by the way, Neil, I love your "Scotchland" story!)
Kathie is offline  
May 2nd, 2004, 03:43 PM
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Interesting reply Kathie. Maybe that is why my wifes family (Indian) always want us to bring meds, even the ususal stuff like ibuprofen and vitamins, that are readily available there. One of our Indian friends here who works for Phizer has said meds made there are 70% effective compared to meds made outside the country. Maybe the QC is lacking.
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