Paper: Next summer Finnish e-prescriptions can be filled in Estonia

The reforms are part of an EU group's effort to boost cross-border trade and commerce across Europe.

File photo of Tallinn, Estonia. Image: AOP

Starting next summer Finnish residents will be able to buy medication from Estonian pharmacies using electronic prescriptions written by physicians in Finland, according to newspaper Uutisuomalainen.

Finnish apothecaries will also be able to fill Estonian e-prescriptions, but not until the required computer infrastructure is ready.

The paper writes that is expected to take place in 2019, roughly the same time that Sweden joins the burgeoning, borderless system.

Finland's prescription reforms are part of ongoing efforts by the EU-backed Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), a group which promotes growth, jobs and competitiveness in Europe.

The National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL), which is coordinating the project locally, says the changes will primarily benefit travellers.

THL's expert on eHealth, Harri Nummi, told the paper that being able to fill prescriptions while out of the country has significant benefits.

"If people know that they can buy medication in the country they're visiting, people [with conditions like diabetes] can then consider leaving medications like insulin, which is heat-sensitive, at home and buy it when they arrive," Nurmi told the paper.

Current law prohibits prescriptions written out by Finnish doctors to be filled in other European countries, unless the prescription explicitly states it is meant to be filled abroad.