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Prescriptions and MedicationsBack to top Back to main Skip to menu
Switzerland - Prescriptions and Medications
Out of hours pharmacies exist, although there is an emergency surcharge of around CHF 20. The station pharmacy will often have extended opening hours and may even be open 24 hours, 7 days a week, but you can also check the SOS Pharmacy website to find out a pharmacy offering an out of hours service as this can vary from week to week on a rota basis. The site is available in English at SOS Pharmacy
As well as paying for your medicine, if you go to a pharmacy to have medicine dispensed for the first time they will also charge you an administration fee of a few Swiss francs which will open a personal record for you on their systems. You will also be charged for any advice you receive or if the pharmacist feels it necessary to check anything with your doctor before dispensing.
Your doctor will prescribe a particular brand of medicine, but there are often generic equivalents available through the pharmacy which will cost significantly less. In fact, if a generic equivalent exists and you are dispensed the branded medicine, you can be charged a higher insurance excess/deductible for it. It's up to you to remember to ask the pharmacy to dispense the generic medicine.
Due to the high costs of medicine in Switzerland, expats living near the border sometimes journey into Germany or France to have medicine dispensed by a pharmacist.
Largest Swiss pharmacy network, visit website for branch locator
Coop Vitality Apotheke
Coop (supermarket) run pharmacies, visit website for branch locator
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