GP Nord Ltd
Reg. Nr:
Kurzemes prospekts 23, Rīga, LV-1067, Latvija

Unregistered medicines in Latvia

The Latvian pharmaceutical market is small, sometimes the registration of new or specific medicines in our country is not a priority for the manufacturer, due to the time, cost and other resources of the registration procedure for the consumer, so there are medicines that are only sought in other countries. In cases when the registered medicine of a patient cannot be used due to medical reasons, the doctor prescribes a prescription for the purchase of a medicine not registered in Latvia, and it is officially ordered.

Unregistered prescription drugs are used:
• cases of specific diseases
• an authorized medicine cannot be used for medical reasons (allergy, intolerance, etc.)
• there is no drug of a specific composition registered in Latvia, but the specialist determines that a specific composition is required for the treatment process.

Ordering medicines not used in Latvia is simple – you only need a doctor’s prescription that the patient really needs this medicine. It is important that the patient and the doctor communicate that such medications are being considered. Indeed, there are many medicines not registered in Latvia – they are needed for the treatment of ophthalmology, gynecology and gastroenterology, as well as oncology, psychiatry and other medical fields.

Medicines are ordered through a doctor, pharmacist and patient. Medical practitioners inform the pharmacist about diagnoses of diseases with which medicines are not available in Latvia. A doctor is entitled to an unregistered medicine prescribed to a patient in such specific cases, and the medicine included in the Latvian Register of Medicines cannot be used to provide treatment for each patient. The import of unauthorized medicines is not strictly regulated, and the responsibility for this medicine is taken by the doctor, who also informs the patient about the correct use of the medicine.

Medicines not registered in Latvia can be ordered from the European Union, Russia or any other country in the world according to a prescription issued by a doctor and the approval of the State Agency of Medicines. It is a legal way to buy a medicine, and patients have the right to order a medicine from any pharmacy with a doctor’s prescription. However, the delivery process is more time consuming – in some countries these medicines may not be available, others may have a different name.

If a medicinal product with equivalent effect or analogue is included in the registered medicines of Latvia, the doctor must indicate in the prescription why special unregistered medicines are needed on the spot.

GP Nord is one of the wholesalers of medicines that specializes in the supply of such medicines. Customers have the opportunity to find out the price at the pharmacy with a pharmacist, already when ordering the medicine. Ordering medicines in this way is much safer than buying medicines from unknown foreign sites or ordering them from an unknown individual.

Medicinal products included in the Latvian Register of Medicines can be viewed on the website of the State Agency of Medicines: the full or incomplete name of the medicinal product or active substance must be entered in the search field. Instructions for use of the drug are available there, as well as it is possible to find out the maximum allowable price of the drug in the pharmacy.

In order to prevent the risk of unsafe, counterfeit or substandard medicines entering the legal supply chain, medicines are verified or validated. Every package of a medicine in the European Union is already provided with a unique code during the manufacturing process, which allows the end seller or user to check the authenticity and safety of the particular medicine. Before issuing an authorization, the State Agency of Medicines shall verify that the medicinal product not registered in the Republic of Latvia is safe, which is confirmed by the fact that it has been properly evaluated and registered in the country of origin. Vaccines and other medicines included in the Cabinet of Ministers Regulations No. 416 “Procedures for Distribution and Quality Control of Medicinal Products” in Annex 8, are subject to mandatory quality control.

If an identical analogue is available in the Latvian Register of Medicinal Products, it may not be imported and sold here.

Patients can receive an unregistered medicine only after the State Agency of Medicines has granted permission to distribute this medicine. In order to purchase an unregistered medicine, the patient must submit a prescription issued by a medical practitioner to the pharmacy or, when purchasing a medicine against an e-prescription, must present an identity document – a passport or ID card. When issuing an unregistered medicinal product, the pharmacy shall be accompanied by the following information:
• name of the medicine;
• name and amount of active substance and excipients;
• form and content of the medicine;
• instructions for use and route of administration;
• special warnings for keeping the medicine out of the sight and reach of children and other special warnings (if any);
• expiration date;
• storage conditions (if any);
• serial number;
• special precautions for the disposal of unused medicinal product or waste materials derived from the use of such products (if any);
• name and address of the marketing authorization holder, name and address of the manufacturer of the medicinal product.
• possible side effects (if any).

The wholesaler of medicinal products is responsible for ensuring that, when delivering the medicinal product to a medical institution, each consignment is accompanied by at least one translation of the text of the label of the relevant medicinal product not registered in the Republic of Latvia and instructions for use in the official language.