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Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs “Sets the Bar” in Drug Advice

Thursday, June 9, 2005

Independent Research Firm Says Consumer Reports
Best Buy Drugs
“Sets the Bar” in Website Drug Advice

(Washington, D.C.) – A new report examining the effectiveness and advice of Internet prescription drug sites described Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs as “setting the bar” in providing effective prescription drug advice for consumers.
The report by Forrester Research found that 79 percent of commercially insured prescription drug takers make an effort to learn more about the drugs they are taking – such as talking to their doctor or doing Internet research. When they do research on the Web, 72 percent want drug efficacy and side-effect information, and 67 percent say drug cost comparisons are critical.
Consumer Reports, the go-to source for unbiased consumer purchasing advice, answered consumers’ calls for clinical and cost information when it built its publicly accessible drug information Web site,” the Forrester report said of www.CRBestBuyDrugs.org. The report said the support tools offered by other Internet health sites “tend to be imbalanced along the two dimensions that matter most to consumers: cost and clinical information.”
Joel Gurin, Consumer Reports executive vice president, said, “Consumers are frustrated by the lack of unbiased information when it comes to prescription drugs. Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs fills that information gap by providing easy-to-understand, free advice on which drugs are most cost-effective, as well as clear information on safety and side effects.”
The report, “RX Comparison Tools Come of Age, Forrester Research, Inc, June 2005” said health plans and PBMs should emulate Consumer Reports approach. The site “sets a high standard for helping consumers with prescription decisions,” because it:
Marries cost and clinical content – The site synthesizes cost, efficacy, safety and side-effects data to make a specific recommendation on which drug option will provide the desired clinical results at the best price – even across therapeutic classes.
Helps the reader maker her own choiceConsumer Reports designed the site to consider individual health and risk factors. For example, to lower cholesterol, Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs identifies two different Best Buy drugs based on the percentage of cholesterol that needs to be lowered.
Presents information from an independent position – The project takes no money from plans, pharma, PBMs, or any other commercial interests.
Reports on six categories of drugs are currently available on www.CRBestBuyDrugs.org, with 20 categories eventually covered.
For more information contact: Susan Herold, 202-462-6262