Prescriptions for medicinal products and medical devices

If a medicinal product or medical device was prescribed for a person from another EU Member State or EEA State, it is also possible to get this prescription filled in Austria. Restrictions concerning the recognition of personal prescriptions are only permissible if these restrictions are based on legitimate and justified doubts as to the authenticity, content, or comprehensibility of such a prescription. 

Requirements for prescription filling

To get a prescription filled in Austria, the following prerequisites must be met:

  • The prescription must contain the elements specified in Commission Implementing Directive 2012/52/EU of 20 December 2012 laying down measures to facilitate the recognition of medical prescriptions issued in another Member State.
  • The prescription was issued by a member of a healthcare profession who is legally authorized to do so in the issuing state.

Elements to be included in the prescription

To get the prescription filled, the following elements relating to identity and authenticity must be included:

Identity of the patient:

  • Last name(s)
  • First name(s) (written out, no initials)
  • Date of birth

Authenticity of the prescription:

  • Date of issue

Identity of the prescribing party:

  • Last name(s)
  • First name(s) (written out, no initials)
  • Information on professional qualification
  • Direct contact information (e-mail and telephone or fax numbers, with the country code in each case)
  • Place of practice, including (handwritten or electronic) signature

Identity of the prescribed medicinal product, if required:

  • "Common name"*
  • Brand name in the following cases:
    • the prescribed product is a biological medicinal product or
    • the prescribing party deems it medically necessary; in such cases a brief justification as to why the brand name is being used must be given on the prescription.
  • Pharmaceutical form (tablet, solution, etc.)
  • Amount
  • Strength
  • Dose regime

* In the case of medicinal products, in the international context the international non-proprietary name (INN) recommended by the WHO must generally be listed on the prescription, provided that there is one. Otherwise the name of the active pharmaceutical ingredient must be listed. The reason for this is that brand names differ among EU Member States.

In the case of medical devices, the following information on the identity of the prescribed medical device is required:

  • the name
  • and any other information on the identity of the prescribed medical device.

Refusal to dispense

In the event of doubt regarding the authenticity, content, or comprehensibility of the prescription, pharmacists have the right to refuse to dispense a medicinal product or a medical device.

The used references can be found in the List of sources.

Last update: 19 July 2019

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