Emergency contraception (EC) is available in Belgium: LNG EC, UPA EC, and the use of IUD for EC are included in national policies for family planning; local pharmacies, hospitals, and family planning clinics distribute EC; and Belgium includes EC in its drug reimbursement policies.

Sexual & reproductive health background information

Female population aged 15-49Mean age at first sexual intercourseMean age at birth of first childTotal fertility rate% use of modern contraceptive methodsEstimate2,448,000117.2228.031.84472.9%5Year20102005201020092004

Accessibility & prescription status

In Belgium, LNG EC is available behind the counter from pharmacies, hospitals, and family planning clinics, which means that EC is available without a prescription but is not on the shelves and needs to be requested in order to purchase. Since 2015, UPA EC is also available without a prescription from pharmacies and hospitals.

Physicians are the sole health care professionals who are authorized to provide or prescribe LNG EC.


Type of ECApproximate CostBrand(s) Available
LNG€ 8,55 – € 9,85NorLevo 1.5mg, Postinor, Levodonna, Justine
UPA€ 24,99ellaOne"

The cost of LNG EC was fully reimbursed to the patient when sold with a prescription if the patient was under 21 years old. The cost of UPA EC was partially refunded to the patient (about 40%) if the patient was under 21 years old. However, a new reimbursement scheme applies since April 1st 2020. Unlike initially reported7,  EC pills are not available free of charge to women of any age, but an immediate reimbursement of up to 9 euros applies. This reimbursement or discount on the total price of the EC pill, applies only if the individual purchasing EC agrees to register his/her identification number (ID). The individual registering his/her ID does not need to be the person using the EC pill sold.8

Guidelines & common practices

In May 2021, the Emergency Contraception Guidelines in Belgium were published. This document was agreed upon and published by an interdisciplinary working group consisting of doctors and pharmacists affiliated with the Centre Belge d’Information Pharmacothérapeutique (BCFI), Domus Medica, the General Pharmaceutical Association (APB), University of Antwerp and University of Leuven. Prior to that, in April 2015 the Centre de Développement Scientifique des Pharmaciens – Centrum Wetenschappelijke Ontwikkeling voor Apothekers (CDSP-CWOA), APB had published Contraception d’urgence. Bonnes Pratiques en Officine, a very comprehensive and up-to-date guide that provided recommendations for the supply of LNG and UPA ECPs and the referral for a Cu-IUD. And before, a guide published in 2009 by the scientific group of Belgian general practitioners on Domus Medica, was the main reference.

In addition, in 2023 the Fédération Laïque de Centres de Planning Familial (FLCPF) launched a website to inform individuals of the EC choices available to them and help them chose the optimal EC method in each specific situation: www.macontraceptiondurgence.be.

EC use

Ever use of ECEC use in the last 12 months% with no prescriptionRepeated use of EC in last 12 monthsEstimaten/a0.6%6n/an/aYearn/a2004n/an/a


1 United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. World Population Prospects: The 2010 Revision. New York, 2011.

2 Durex Global Sex Survey Results 2005. Retrieved 20 June 2013, from http://www.durex.com/en-jp/sexualwellbeingsurvey/documents/gss2005result.pdf.

3 United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Statistical Division Database. Mean Age of Women at Birth of First Child by Country and Year. Updated 23 November 2012. Retrieved 19 June 2013, from http://w3.unece.org/pxweb/dialog/varval.asp?ma=04_GEFHAge1stChild_r&path=../database/STAT/30-GE/02-Families_households/&lang=1&ti=Mean+age+of+women+at+birth+of+first+child.

4 Eurostat. Total fertility rate, 1960-2011 (live births per woman). Retrieved 19 June 2013, from http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/statistics_explained/index.php?title=File:Total_fertility_rate,_1960-2011_%28live_births_per_woman%29.png&filetimestamp=20130129121040.

5 United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division. World Contraceptive Use 2012. New York, 2012.

6 https://www.wiv-isp.be/epiolemio/epinl/nospul/hisul/his04nl/his37nl.pdf

7 Ev. Morning-afterpil wordt gratis voor iedereen [Internet]. De Standaard. standaard.be; 2020 [cited 2020Feb25]. Available from: https://www.standaard.be/cnt/dmf20200221_04859306?fbclid=IwAR3pDsdGoVbQ44bOhwgbnzDhH2AsTsWB6F2uNWdmFjNeEkzWUXKpYutdbg

8 Intervention supplémentaire dans le prix des contraceptifs. Institut national d’assurance maladie-invalidité (INAMI). (n.d.). [cited 2023Nov]. Available from:  https://www.inami.fgov.be/fr/themes/soins-de-sante-cout-et-remboursement/les-prestations-de-sante-que-vous-rembourse-votre-mutualite/medicaments/remboursement-d-un-medicament/contraceptifs#que-signifie–intervention-supplementaire


Last update: December 2023.

Previous updates: November and April 203, November 2021, February 2020, February 2016