Pharmacies in Denmark

Updated 18 February 2021

Pharmacies in Denmark have exclusive right to sell prescription-only medicines to consumers, and in addition there are many over-the-counter (OTC) drugs that only pharmacies are allowed to sell.

The pharmacies offer advice on the use of medicines.

Pharmacies in Denmark are operated by private individuals – the proprietary pharmacist (or pharmacy owner)  – who has been granted a licence by the Danish Medicines Agency to run a pharmacy at a specific location.

The Danish Medicines Agency has the overall responsibility for the legislation that the pharmacies must comply with and their economic framework.

As at 1 January 2021, there were 227 pharmacies and two online pharmacies in Denmark. To this should be added 80 branch pharmacies, 209 voluntarily established branches, 24 pharmacy outlets, about 350 OTC outlets and about 400 medicine delivery facilities – all of which are connected to one of the pharmacies.

List of all pharmacies and other prescription-handling units in Denmark (Excel file in Danish).

Several pharmacies also sell medicines online. See our list of pharmacies that sell medicines online.

What pharmacies do

The staff working in Danish pharmacies are pharmacists and pharmaconomists. In addition to selling medicines, they are qualified to help people find the answers to most questions about medicines, the use of medicines and reimbursement.

The pharmacies offer other services than the general advice about the dispensing and sale of medicines, for example:

A medicine conversation for people who have been diagnosed with a chronic disease.

Dose dispensing of medicines to people who need the medicine to be packaged for ease of use.

The issuance of a certificate under the Schengen agreement (a pill passport) to members of the public (in Danish).

Receipt of unwanted medicines from members of the public.

Pharmacy finances

Pharmacies must annually report their pharmacy financial accounts to the Danish Medicines Agency.

Pharmacies in Denmark must pay a number of fees to the Danish Medicines Agency. In return, the pharmacies are compensated for the services they offer.

Special rules apply to the pharmacies’ profit margins on the sale of medicines in order to make sure the same prices are charged at the customer’s pharmacy of choice.

Collaboration with the industry

Pharmacies in Denmark must notify their relationships if they wish to operate or be connected to a pharmaceutical or a medical device company. 

Pharmacists, pharmaconomists and students within these fields must also submit a notification if they receive financial support to participate in a professional activity abroad from a pharmaceutical or a medical device pharmacy.