"Morning-after pill" - the most important information


  • The "morning-after pill" can be used to prevent pregnancy up to 5 days after sexual intercourse.
  • The "morning-after pill" delays ovulation. If ovulation has already occurred, the "morning-after pill" is not effective.
  • The "morning-after pill" is available in pharmacies, from doctors or also in hospitals and can be given to the woman concerned after a personal consultation.

When is the "morning-after pill" used?

The "morning-after pill" can be used for emergency contraception up to 5 days after sexual intercourse. Emergency contraception means preventing pregnancy, e.g. after a mistake in taking the pill.

Where can I get the "morning-after pill"?

In Switzerland, the "morning-after pill" is available from pharmacies or doctors after a personal consultation. You cannot order the "morning-after pill".

How do I get the "morning-after pill"? How does the counselling conversation proceed?

Simply come into the pharmacy and ask for either the "morning-after pill" ("I would like to buy the morning-after pill") or a consultation in the consultation room ("I would like a consultation in the consultation room"). However, you can also register for it online.
The pharmacist will use a questionnaire to clarify whether taking the "morning-after pill" is an option. If you have any questions about the "morning-after pill", you can ask them at any time. After the questionnaire, you will be given the "morning after pill" as required, which you will then take at the pharmacy. The pharmacist will once again tell you the most important information.

What does the "morning-after pill" cost?

The "morning-after pill" Levonorgestrel Sandoz costs CHF 58.40 (including consultation).
The "morning-after pill" ellaOne costs CHF 63.90 (including consultation).
The pill consultation without the "morning-after pill" costs CHF 20.00.

There is either the active ingredient levonorgestrel or ulipristal acetate in the "morning-after pill". The active ingredients delay ovulation by at least five days - that is, as long as the male sperm can survive in the female body. The delay prevents the sperm from fertilising the egg cells. The "morning-after pill" has a short-term effect and the hormonal changes are temporary. Fertility is not affected.

Does the "morning-after pill" also work after ovulation?

No. Taking it after ovulation is ineffective. If ovulation already took place, the fertilisation of the egg cell is possible.

When should the "morning-after pill" be taken?
How long is the "morning-after pill" effective?

The "morning-after pill" should be taken as soon as possible. The "morning-after pill" ellaOne can be taken up to a maximum of 5 days (120 hours) after sexual intercourse, the “morning-after pill” Levonorgestrel Sandoz up to 3 days (72 hours) afterwards.

How safe is the pill really?

What percentage is the "morning-after pill" safe?

Taking the "morning-after pill" can reduce the risk of becoming pregnant to as low as 0.9 percent. The “morning-after pill” works best if it is taken as soon as possible after sexual intercourse. Therefore, come to the pharmacy as soon as possible.

Can you get pregnant again right after taking the "morning-after pill"?

Yes. The "morning-after pill" is not a contraception for future sexual intercourse. If you have unprotected sex again after taking the pill, pregnancy is possible, which is why you should use contraception as usual after taking the "morning-after pill". During the consultation, the pharmacist will tell you what to do with your contraception after taking the "morning-after pill".

What are the side effects of the "morning-after pill"?

The most common symptoms are nausea, headache, lower abdominal discomfort, fatigue and dizziness. Spotting has also been observed and the timing of the next menstrual period may be delayed. If vomiting occurs within three hours of taking the "morning-after pill", you must take the "morning-after pill" again.

What are the interactions of the "morning-after pill"?

The two "morning-after pills" have different interactions. We will inform you about this at the pharmacy and therefore ask you during the consultation what other medicines you are taking. Further information is available at compendium.ch: Levonorgestrel Sandoz and ellaOne.

What is the "morning-after coil"?

In addition to the "morning-after pill", the "morning-after coil" is also a method of emergency contraception. It has to be inserted by a medical professional.

This text was last updated on 1st November 2021. Quality assured by Teresa Grossi, pharmacist.




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