Philadelphia Inquirer

July 25, 2012

By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer

Generic competition – a billion-dollar problem for brand-name drug companies since the 1980s – is making inroads in the orthopedic-medical-devices industry.

Last week, Cardinal Health Inc., one of the three biggest device wholesalers, said it was increasing its offering of lower-cost products for broken bones.

This nascent trend, borne of increasing pressure to control health-care costs, represents a direct threat to brand-name device-makers, such as West Chester-based Synthes, which was bought in June by Johnson & Johnson for $19.7 billion.

Cardinal Health, 21st on the Fortune 500 list, is based in Dublin, Ohio, and has offices in the Philadelphia area. In announcing its so-called Orthopedic Solutions option for hospitals and surgery centers, Cardinal said it could supply some products at 30 percent to 50 percent savings…

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