New rules for dispensing prescription drugs. An important change for patients

New rules for dispensing prescription drugs.  An important change for patients

The new rules for dispensing medicines come into force from September 21 and after November 1, 2023. Find out what to expect when filling your prescription.

On Wednesday, September 20, 2023, the amended text of the Act on the reimbursement of medicines, foodstuffs for particular nutritional uses and medical devices and certain other acts was published in the Journal of Laws of the Republic of Poland. What results from the changed provisions? One issue is particularly important from the point of view of both pharmacists and pharmacy customers.

Medicines issued only for a specific duration of treatment

We can no longer buy medicines in pharmacies for a period longer than 120 days of treatment. It is calculated based on the dosage method specified in the prescription. This applies not only to medicinal preparations, but also to other pharmaceutical products, foodstuffs for particular nutritional uses, and medical devices. The number of days mentioned is the so-called maximum period. There will be no deviations from it. What if the patient receives a prescription indicating the use of the drug for a period longer than the one mentioned above? In such a situation, he will have to wait a little over a month to complete the order:

“For prescriptions for a drug, food for particular nutritional purposes, or medical device for more than 120 days of treatment, subsequent prescriptions will be possible from November 1, 2023,” we read in the announcement prepared by the District Pharmaceutical Chamber (OIA) in Warsaw.

It is worth noting that until now, a patient could buy at a pharmacy the amount of medicine necessary for a 180-day treatment, calculated on the basis of the dosage method specified in the prescription. This means that the maximum period for which a given medicinal product can be obtained has been shortened by 60 days. However, OIA stipulates that the guidelines for the application of new regulations issued by the Ministry of Health may still change.

Dispensing of prescription drugs after November 1, 2023

“If the prescription referred to in section 7a point 2, an amount greater than for 120-day use has been prescribed, the patient may receive the next amount of the medicinal product, food for particular nutritional uses or medical device necessary for the next 120-day period of use after 3/4 of the period for which the prescription has been filled. – we read in the Journal of Laws.

What does this provision mean in practice? Once the patient has purchased the amount of medicine necessary for a 120-day treatment, he or she will be able to fill the next prescription only after 90 days.

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