Information for medicine users

EN Ajankohtaista / Biologisten lääkevaihto / Lääkkeen käyttäjille

Starting from 1 April 2024, a biological medicine can be substituted at pharmacy with a more affordable alternative. The substitution can be made at a pharmacy for a similar, more affordable medicine called a biosimilar. The biosimilar is as safe and as effective as the original biological medicine.

Automatic substitution increases price competition and curbs the medicine reimbursement costs of the society. 

Since 2017, physicians have had a statutory obligation to prescribe the most affordable biological medicine suitable for the patient's care. Prescriptions for biological medicines are only valid for one year at a time.

The substitution of biological medicines in pharmacies will start in stages from April 2024. The first substitution stage will cover enoxaparin preparations and the last stage will cover long-acting insulins in January 2026. Short-acting insulins are not part of the automatic substitution scheme. Biological medicines for patients under the age of 18 will not be substituted at a pharmacy.

The schedule for generic substitution of biological medicines in pharmacies:  1 April 2024 enoxaparin preparations, 1 January 2025 all biological drugs except insulins, 1 April 2025 insulin glargines, 1 January 2026 other long-acting insulins. Short-acting insulins are not a part of the generic substitution scheme.

EN Ajankohtaista / Biologisten lääkevaihto / Lääkkeen käyttäjille (UKK-osio)