Informative Note

Removal of retail price from medicine packaging and access to information for users


Com o objetivo de melhorar a informação disponibilizada aos utentes no âmbito da dispensa de medicamentos, foram eliminadas as referências ao preços de venda ao público (PVP) das embalagens, entre outras alterações significativas no que respeita à informação sobre o preço dos medicamentos. 

Decree-Law 128/2023 was published on 26 December and introduces significant changes to information on the price of medicines. Among other things, the Decree-Law aims to improve the information provided to users when medicines are dispensed. It also removes the reference to the retail price (PVP) on the packaging, as this reference has proved to be of little relevance or even difficult to interpret.

These are the most important changes introduced by Decree-Law 128/2023:

 Removal of the price on medicine packaging

The change in the law provides for the removal of the retail price of medicines from the packaging.

In the Decree-Law, the government explains that the retail price on the packaging does not usually correspond to the cost of the medicine to the citizen. This is due to the variables that influence the price, such as (possible) reimbursement and its different application criteria.

The removal of the retail price from the packaging therefore aims to avoid providing information that does not correspond to reality. It also aims to avoid outdated information due to price changes and to favour other forms of access to information that appear to be more up-to-date and therefore more reliable.

 Information on the invoice or invoice/receipt issued by pharmacies

Pharmacies are obliged to provide users with detailed information on the price of medicines on the invoice or receipt issued. This information must include:

  • The retail price of the medicine;
  • The reference price, if applicable;
  • The state contribution as a percentage of the retail price;
  • The cost borne by the state; and
  • The cost borne by the user.

 Public information provided by INFARMED

With this amendment, the law now recognises INFARMED's responsibility to make information on the price of medicines publicly available on its website and through other digital tools. These digital tools include the INFARMED database and the Poupe na Receita (Save on your Prescription) app available on the INFARMED website.

The regular evaluation of these channels for providing information will be carried out in conjunction with representatives of health professional organisations and associations, patient associations and the pharmaceutical sector.

Decree-Law 128/2023 entered into force on 27 December 2023 and took effect on 02 January 2024.


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