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Brazil – Prescriptions and Medications

Brazil has a robust healthcare system, with both public and private healthcare providers available. The country has a large network of pharmacies that offer prescription and over-the-counter medications to its citizens. In this article, we will answer some of the most common questions regarding prescriptions and medications in Brazil.

Pharmacies in Brazil

Pharmacies in Brazil are called “farmácias” and are easily identifiable by their green cross sign. They are found in most cities, towns, and villages, and are often located near hospitals and medical centers.

Pharmacy Opening Times in Brazil

Most pharmacies in Brazil operate from 8 am to 8 pm, Monday to Saturday. On Sundays and public holidays, they may have shorter operating hours or may not open at all. However, some pharmacies located in hospitals and airports may operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Obtaining Medications in Brazil

In Brazil, certain medications can be purchased over the counter without a prescription, while others require a prescription from a medical doctor or a dentist. Over-the-counter medications include pain relievers, cold and flu medicines, and vitamins. Prescription medications include antibiotics, antidepressants, and medications for chronic conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, and asthma.

It is also possible to order medications online from Brazilian pharmacies. However, it is important to exercise caution when ordering medications online, as there are many fraudulent online pharmacies that sell counterfeit or expired medications.

Paying for Prescriptions and Medications in Brazil

Prescriptions and medications can be paid for in cash or with a debit or credit card. It is important to note that some pharmacies in Brazil may not accept foreign debit or credit cards, so it is advisable to carry cash or a Brazilian debit card when visiting a pharmacy.


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In conclusion, Brazil has a well-established healthcare system with numerous pharmacies available throughout the country. While some medications can be purchased over the counter, others require a prescription from a medical doctor or a dentist. It is important to exercise caution when ordering medications online and to pay with cash or a Brazilian debit card when visiting a pharmacy.


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