Latvian meds e-prescriptions will be valid abroad

Latvia has started a cross-border exchange of e-prescription data with certain countries, the National Health Service (NVD) said on March 20. E-prescription medicines can already be purchased in Estonia, Lithuania, Poland, the Czech Republic, Portugal, and Spain, and the number of these countries will gradually increase.

Until now, medicinal products prescribed in Latvia could be purchased abroad only if the prescription was written out on a paper form.

From March 4 this year, residents of certain EU Member States can purchase their e-prescription medicines in pharmacies in Latvia, if the home country has started exchanging data with Latvia. Currently, medicinal products prescribed in Estonia, Poland, Czech Republic, Portugal, and Spain can be purchased in Latvian pharmacies, and vice-versa. According to the information available to the NVD, Latvian pharmacies have already had the first cases when e-prescription medicinal products issued abroad have been issued.

Information on countries that exchange e-prescription data with Latvia is regularly updated and is available on the NVD website under the heading “cross-border E-Health services” (in Latvian only).

When you arrive at a pharmacy in another EU Member State, you must state that you are a resident of Latvia and want to purchase e-prescription medicines that have been prescribed in Latvia, and present your identity douments.

If you want to use an e-prescription that has been issued in Latvia for the receipt of reimbursable medicinal products, it will have to be paid for by yourself. In this case, when you return to Latvia, you can contact the NVD to request reimbursement of expenses. 

It will not be possible to purchase e-prescription medicinal products issued in Latvia if they contain psychotropic or narcotic substances, as well as medicinal products indicated in the e-prescription in free text form (for example, medicinal products prepared by pharmacies to order).

NVD said that as of March 4, cross-border exchange of basic health data has also been initiated – when receiving medical assistance in another EU Member State, if necessary, medical practitioners involved in the medical treatment process will be able to view basic health data of the patient – the established diagnoses and information regarding surgical intervention, if such has occurred in the last six months.

It is planned that data exchange will gradually be ensured between all Member States of the cross-border project.

Basic health data information on Latvian residents is already available in Estonian, Portuguese, Spanish and French medical institutions.

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