GLOSSARY: Generic Drugs

Generic Drugs are drugs produced and marketed under its chemical or "generic" name (e.g. acetaminophen) as opposed to "Tylenol", a brand name for the former produced by Johnson & Johnson. A generic drug can be sold only after a proprietary drug goes off patent (i.e. when the patent runs out after 17 years). There are numerous generic drug manufacturers. While generic drugs are cheaper for consumers, they still must meet the standards of GMPs as set out by the FDA.