SCCC Swiss Canadian Chamber of Commerce (Ontario)

SUISSE news Winter 2018 / December 2018

A New Online Information Service for Patients and Doctors, Developed by a SCCC Member Company
Philipp Gysling

Swiss patients and Swiss doctors have a new service available to them that will improve communications between the two parties as well as improve drug compliance and, by extension, treatment outcomes and patients’ well-being. The new plain language drug information sheets are focused on clear and straight-forward instructions for the patients. The service had been in beta testing for a few months and as of November 15, 2018, it is now available to all as a subscription service.

As many of our readers surely know, the way medications are dispensed in Switzerland is slightly different than it is in Canada. In many cases a Swiss patient receives her or his prescription medications directly from the physician who prescribes them (instead of having the prescription filled at a pharmacy). This situation is not optimal for ensuring that the patient understands the critical elements of his or her drug treatment. There might be time constraints or communication obstacles when a patient visits with the doctor so that a patient may leave the doctor’s office without being completely clear why something was prescribed. These issues are further exacerbated if the patient’s native language is not one that the doctor speaks as well. There are large Albanian-, Portuguese- and Turkish-speaking immigrant groups in Switzerland who struggle with the official Swiss languages, let alone medical jargon.

The new service is called med111 and can be found at The initial objective was to develop a support tool for doctors in Switzerland to help them in their interactions with their patients. It quickly became evident, though, that the service was equally useful when offered directly to patients. Currently, the application is available in three front-end languages (German, French, and English), meaning that the application can be navigated in those languages. More importantly though, the information on the medications is available in eight languages: German, French, Italian, English, Spanish, Portuguese, Turkish, and Albanian. These eight languages cover well over 90% of patients’ native languages in Switzerland. The drug information is also tailored to what is available on the Swiss market: the 230 generic substances and 700 brand names in the database also cover about 90% of medications dispensed by family physicians in Switzerland. All of these information sheets are available in all languages.

The user interface of the application has been designed as simply as possible so that information sheets can be accessed, assembled, and printed efficiently. As a user you just have to type in the name of the drug and you’re immediately given a list of available options to print, you select all the pages you need and click “print”.

The system assembles all the desired information sheets on the fly and creates a PDF file that you can either print or save. Download an example of the information sheet above by clicking on the link below:

(for cholesterol lowering drug atorvastatin)

Med111 is currently entering partnerships with third party health services providers and is also planning to add more languages and drugs to its offering.

If you are interested in trying out this new online service you can sign up for a free 2-week Test Subscription. In addition, as readers of the “SUISSE news” newsletter you can take advantage of a time-limited promotion which will give you a EUR 10 discount on a yearly subscription (cost of EUR 45 instead of EUR 55) with the following promotion code: sccc-to-2018
The promotion ends on January 31, 2019.

Please contact Philipp Gysling (