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Christian Lebrecht

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Dr. Christian Lebrecht is a member of Baker McKenzie's Pharmaceuticals and Healthcare Practice Group in Frankfurt. He obtained his Doctor of Law degree at the University of Mainz on a topic related to French and German commercial law in 2019.

In its recent judgment (24 March 2022 – C-533/20, Somogy Megyei Kormányhivatal/Upfield Hungary Kft.), the European Court of Justice has decided how specific the labeling of vitamins in the list of ingredients of food must be. The court ruled that indicating the specific vitamin formulation (e.g., “cholecalciferol”) is unnecessary. Rather, using the more general name of the vitamin such as “Vitamin D” in the list of ingredients is sufficient. In addition, the judgment of the court can be understood in such a way that indicating the more complex vitamin formulation in the list of ingredients might even be prohibited.

In Germany, the digitalization of the healthcare market is a hot topic. “Digital health” is prominently featured in the coalition agreement of the newly elected German federal government. At the same time, there is still skepticism within the medical community on whether quality standards might fall victim to these rapid developments. Now, the German Federal Civil Court has addressed some of those concerns. In its December 2021 ruling (I ZR 146/20), the court has ruled that advertisement for comprehensive tele-treatment of patients (Fernbehandlung) violates applicable law.

The heads of the Social Democratic Party, the Green Party and the Free Democratic Party presented the coalition agreement of the newly elected German federal government on Wednesday, 24 November 2021. One focus lies on the healthcare and life sciences sector. From driving forward the digitalization of the healthcare market, ensuring the sufficient supply of medicinal products and vaccines, and more restrictions on the prices of medicinal products, to strengthening pharmacies in underserved areas and legalizing recreational cannabis, the new government has set itself a substantive health agenda for the next four years.