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24 hr Avd EuropaIn Spain if you require a chemist you need to look for a ‘farmacia’ and in this region there is one per 2,200 head of registered population. There are many in Benidorm and two 24 hr ones located in the popular Rincon area - one on the main Avd Mediterraneo and another on the Avd Europa.

24hr Avd MedThe staff all speak good English, so you shouldn’t have a problem with communication in either. In smaller towns, by law there must always be one open 24 hrs as well as on Sunday and they operate on a rota basis. If you go after closing time then there will be a sign on the door informing you which one is open in the area.

medicineIn the UK you can buy certain medication at the supermarket such as aspirin, ibuprofen and cough remedies but here only the farmacia can sell these items. Do not go to Carrefour, Mercadona or any other store thinking you will be able to pick up a packet of paracetemol like you can back home. It has only been a relatively recent change that has enabled you to purchase plasters, dressings and basic first aid items from the supermarket.

CarlosPrescription costs are far cheaper here than in the UK – you pay a percentage dependent on your social security status. Many ask the question can you buy certain UK prescription medication over the counter here. The answer - ”technically no” according to a pharmacist I spoke with, however, there are always exceptions.

EHICIf coming here on holiday ensure that you take a valid blue European Health Insurance Card – this replaced the old E111 form. They are FREE to obtain – do not be conned into paying for one via the numerous unofficial websites you find on Google searches.

IMG 4117If you are on repeat medication and run out you have two options. Go to a farmacia and ask if you can purchase it – if able to you will pay the full cost. It will all depend on which one you go to and what the medication is. Alternatively go to the Centro de Salud (Health Centre) with your EHIC and passport and ask to see the doctor - there is one just behind the Indoor Market. Explain that you have run out of your medication and they will be able to write you a prescription for which you will then pay the subsidized rate – normally 40%.

amoxicilinaTwo prescription only items in the UK - Amoxicilina antibiotics and Voltaren Retard 100mg anti-inflammatory can often be purchased here without a problem and for just a few euros.

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