In brief

In the course of 2022, the Health Protection Command of the Carabinieri Corp enforced 61 orders, issued by the competent directorates general of the Ministry of Health, providing for the shutdown of websites selling different types of prescription-only medicines in breach of the existing legislation.

Key takeaways

Indeed, Article 112-quater of Legislative Decree No. 219/2006 prohibits the online sale of drugs subject to medical prescription and only allows for the sale of prescription-free drugs, including over-the-counter medicines. In addition, 112-quater above provides that the online sale of prescription-free drugs can only be carried out by pharmacies and commercial establishments — “para-pharmacies” or “health corners” — that have previously obtained an ad hoc authorization issued by the competent authority and identified by the relevant regional or provincial legislation.