Here the chemist will tell me that a generic will be a lot cheaper than the specific drug that the doctor has prescribed. Generally I take the generic because the rule is that if the health system believes that the generic is a full replacement then they won’t subsidise the specific drug so you end up paying a lot more. For instance I pay NOK 55 (about USD 7) for 100 Losartan Krka pills (for hypertension) but the Cozaar that my doctor prescribed would be almost five times as much.
My point, which I seem to have almost lost track of, is that the chemist knows exactly what each driug will cost me and can advise me on substitutes.
Also the chemist is required by law to offer me the generic.
And if I spend more than about USD 250 on drugs in a tax year I get the excess back in my tax settlement.