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Access to COVID-19 antiviral medication

Wednesday, December 7, 2022   Posted in: Signatory Notice Board By: Administrator With tags: disease, support

There were 34,528 new COVID-19 cases reported in New Zealand in the week to 4th December 2022. Of these cases, 9099 or 26 percent were reinfections, or people contracting COVID-19 for the second, third (or more) time.

New Zealanders are still being hospitalised and sadly, some are dying with COVID-19 as an underlying or contributory cause. Antiviral medications are free and available to people who are at risk of getting severely ill from COVID-19.

Te Whatu Ora Waitaha wants eligible people to know about antivirals before they get sick, so they can get the medicines quickly if needed, and that the medicines are available directly through many pharmacies.

People who test positive for COVID-19 should stay home and isolate and call their pharmacist or usual healthcare provider for a phone appointment to talk about antivirals.

Antivirals are free for people eligible under Pharmac’s access criteria, which were expanded in September and now includes:

To be eligible, a patient must have COVID-19 and be experiencing symptoms or be a household contact of someone with COVID-19 and be experiencing symptoms.

The COVID-19 Health Hub website has information on getting free COVID-19 antiviral medication, and is the best place for advice on what to do if you test positive for - or are exposed to - COVID-19.