Dr. to Write "Dispense As Written" on Rx

Doctor Hand-writing

Doctor Hand-writing "Dispense As Written" on Rx

Why doses Medicaid require "dispense as written" on the prescription for a generic medication?

I sent a patient out with a prescription for a generic medication. The pharmacist sent the patient back to the office to request that I write the words "dispense as written" on the prescription. With this particular medication, it does not matter to me which generic drug manufacturer is used. Therefore, why does Medicare require the words "dispense as written" hand written on the prescription?

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DAW Handwritten by MD for a Medicare Prescription
by: David

Writing "Dispense As Written" on a prescription does not have anything to do with which generic manufacturer is used.

When it is written on a prescription, it mandates that the Brand name medication ONLY is used. (This would be indicated as "DAW #1" in the pharmacy computer.)

I would check with the pharmacy that sent the RX back to you to be signed.

Medicare part D plans usually require generic substitution when there is no indication on the prescription due to the significant cost savings to the Government.

According to the FDA.gov website,

"On average, the cost of a generic drug is 80 to 85 percent lower than the brand name product. In 2010 alone, the use of FDA-approved generics saved $158 billion, an average of $3 billion every week."


Almost 8 out of every 10 prescriptions dispensed in the US are dispensed as generic medications.

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