A recent poll of people with HIV living in the United Kingdom found that they largely understood the financial importance of shifting to generic antiretrovirals (ARVs) in the coming years, and that they also expressed significant reservations about how the drugs would affect efficacy, pill burden and side effects, aidsmap reports. Conducted by NAM during April and May 2013, the confidential online survey polled 122 people with HIV in the United Kingdom. A total of 110 of the respondents were male, and the group had an average age of 42.

During the next few years, many of the top HIV medications will go off patent in that country. Equivalents of the core components of Atripla will soon be available in generic from in the United States.

Nearly nine in 10 of the respondents knew what a generic drug was, and 70 percent believed such a drug would provide a better value than a brand-name drug.

A total of 45 percent of the respondents said they would consider it annoying, confusing, inconvenient or concerning if their care provider asked them to switch from a brand-name to a generic antiretroviral. Sixty-eight percent were concerned about changes in efficacy, and 65 percent about side effects. Fifty-six percent were concerned with the methods required to take their drug regimen, including the potential for increased pill burden or food restrictions.

To read the aidsmap story, click here.

To download a copy of the poster presentation on the poll, click here.