In the general case, pharmacies in Germany are required to give out the cheapest prescription-only medicine. Doctors may overrule this (e.g., by marking the aut idem field).

If the cheapest medicine contains gelatin, and there is a more expensive variant without gelatin, can vegans get the more expensive variant without paying the price difference?

If yes, does the prescribing doctor have to arrange this, or can pharmacies decide this on their own?

1 Answer 1


Pharmacies in germany are forced by law to give you the cheapest medicine. Sometimes your health insurance has a contract with a special manufacturer. In that case, the pharmacy will give you a product from this contractor.

Yes, your doctor can force the pharmacy to give you a vegan medicine or he can write you a recipe over a concrete medicine. When the aut idem field is not marked, you will get exactly that product what the doctor has written on the recipe.

But you have no right to get a vegan medicine, if it isn´t instructed by the doctor. But you can pay by your own for the more expensive medicine.

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