What medicines you could struggle to find in Switzerland right now

The Local Switzerland
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What medicines you could struggle to find in Switzerland right now
More than one hundred medications are in short supply. Photo: Pixabay

Switzerland has been experiencing a shortage of drugs for months and the situation is not expected to be resolved quickly.


Some 125 medications are either in short supply or missing from Swiss pharmacies altogether, a situation which the Federal Office for National Economic Supply (FONES) considers "problematic".

The shortage affects medicines that can be bought both with and without doctor’s prescription, as well as those only used in hospital settings to manage pain.

Among the meds that are difficult to find right now are Paracetamol pain killers; anti-inflammatory, Aspirin-based drug Aspegic; antibiotic Amoxicillin; Epipen self-injectable adrenaline pens used in cases of severe allergic reactions; anti-anxiety medicine Temesta; as well as children’s cough syrups.


You can the complete list of all medications that are currently missing in Switzerland here

One of the reasons for the shortage is production disruptions caused by lockdowns, particularly in China.

Factories in China, which manufactures active substances for medications sold in Switzerland and Europe, have been idle amid the surge of that country’s Covid-19 cases.

Flu and and respiratory illnesses that had struck in recent months, also depleted the stocks, further contributing to the shortage.

To deal with this situation, the government is launching a task force composed of representatives of the cantonal pharmacists, drug regulator Swissmedic, the umbrella organisation of pharmacists Pharmasuisse, and the Federal Office of Public Health.

The panel is looking into possible immediate, even if short-term, measures, “in particular, to establish additional contacts with the [pharmaceutical] industry to see what can be put in place quickly,” according to FONES’ spokesperson Christoph Trösch.


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