Are prescription medicines "commercial" products?

meijin

Senior Member
Japanese
Hi, if a survey asked "Have you bought a commercial pharmaceutical ointment in the last six months?", would you answer "Yes" if you had obtained (paid for) a pharmaceutical ointment prescribed at the hospital?"
 
  • sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Yes, but it's not limited to prescription medication. "Commercial" is anything produced by an established company, in contrast to your friendly witch doctor (or drug dealer) down at the corner.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Yes, but it's not limited to prescription medication. "Commercial" is anything produced by an established company, in contrast to your friendly witch doctor (or drug dealer) down at the corner.
    :D
    However, one may obtain a prescription product without having to pay for it - if it is covered by a health plan of some sort - so one could answer "No" to a question about a "purchase".
     

    meijin

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    Thank you both very much. We Japanese often compare (in Japanese) "prescription medicines" and "commercial medicines" (e.g. "Which is cheaper, prescription medicines or commercial medicines?"), but I suppose in English this comparison would be wrong, and you'd instead ask "Which is cheaper, prescription medicines or non-prescription medicines?" (I wonder if "is" is correct in this question, since you would say, for example, "Prescription medicines are usually cheaper than non-prescription medicines.")
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    "Which is cheaper, prescription medicines or non-prescription medicines?" (I wonder if "is" is correct in this question, since you would say, for example, "Prescription medicines are usually cheaper than non-prescription medicines.":tick:)
    "Medicines" is plural, of course, but I strongly doubt the accuracy of the statement, at least in the U.S.
     
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