Generic Medicinal Products
As a matter of principle, pharmaceutical entrepreneurs have their newly developed pharmaceutically active substances patented. Such a patent protection lasts for 20 years and grants them the exclusive right to manufacture and market the active substance within this period of time. After the original patent has expired, other entrepreneurs can also produce this active substance and sell it under a different name. Such pharmaceuticals are called generic medicinal products or generic(s). As a rule, generic medicinal products are less expensive than the originator drug, as the manufacturers did not have to undertake research of their own but could benefit from the expired patent protection of the [original] medicinal product. The BfArM also applies strict criteria to the evaluation and supervision of generics prior to licensing.