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Trade association proposes sales points for OTC drugs

Hungary's National Trade Association (OKSz) has proposed to the government that the sale of over-the-counter medicines be allowed primarily at supermarkets, shops selling dietary supplements and filling stations, OKSz general secretary György Vámos told MTI on Wednesday. The government decided at a cabinet meeting in August to licence some non-pharmacy businesses for the sale of OTC drugs. These retailers would have to meet certain professional requirements and they would be registered with the National Public Health Service (ÁNTSZ). OKSz has proposed that retailers should be allowed to sell the drugs but display them in separate areas. It has also suggested that the range of OTC drugs allowed for sale outside of pharmacies should be narrowed. OKSz noted that its members do not believe allowing the sale of the drugs outside pharmacies will result in price rises. In fact, it would spare customers the additional fee pharmacies charge to fill orders after regular hours. Retailers from supermarkets to petrol stations have long urged the government to allow the sale of OTC drugs on their premises, which is normal practice in most European countries. (Mti)