ATHENS – Doctors who’ve written too many prescriptions and pharmacists who don’t provide generic medicines could be fined up to 5,000 euros for violations of new health laws.
The Health Ministry said it will impose the penalties as part of plans to cut down unnecessary health expenses in a country which is prescription-mad and antibiotic use is heavy.
Doctors who fail to abide by the prescription quotas introduced by main healthcare provider EOPYY will be fined between 500 and 5,000 euros, suspended from prescribing drugs for two to 12 months or banned from working with the organization, depending on how frequently they exceed the limit.
Pharmacists who don’t tell customers about generic alternatives to more expensive brand names for which the state pays big subsidies will also be hit. Greeks shy away from generics, believing them unsafe or ineffective although they chemically are the same as brand nanes.
Customers will have to sign their prescriptions, confirming that their pharmacists informed them about the generic option if they choose brand name drugs instead. EOPYY will also be able to suspend its cooperation with pharmacies for up to six months.