A survey of physician knowledge of drug costs

J Pain Symptom Manage. 1995 Aug;10(6):432-5. doi: 10.1016/0885-3924(95)00018-t.


Previous studies have indicated that physicians have inadequate knowledge of drug costs. This study was designed to determine actual pharmacy prices of 12 nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and physicians' knowledge of these prices. Pharmacists (N = 67) in a large urban area were surveyed to determine the lowest retail price of commonly prescribed medications. Pain clinic and orthopedic physicians (N = 95) were surveyed to determine their knowledge of prices for 12 NSAIDs. There was wide variation between pharmacies in the cost of medications. Eighty-one percent of physicians agreed that cost is an important factor to consider. Only 25% of physicians estimated at least one-half of the medications between the highest and lowest pharmacy price. The results of this study indicate that physicians need more information about prices of medications they prescribe.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / economics*
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Humans
  • Physicians*
  • Prescription Fees*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal