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Expanded access to COVID-19 oral antiviral treatments on the PBS

Page last updated: 1 November 2022

Expanded eligibility criteria for COVID-19 oral antiviral treatments (Lagevrio® (molnupiravir) and Paxlovid® (nirmatrelvir and ritonavir)

Eligibility for Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) access to COVID-19 oral antiviral treatments, Lagevrio® (molnupiravir) and Paxlovid® (nirmatrelvir and ritonavir) will be widened from 1 November 2022. These antivirals can be taken at home and reduce the risk of severe disease or going to hospital.

First Nations people, aged 30 years or over, will require only one risk factor (from the current list of risk factors) instead of two, to meet the definition of high risk for the purpose of PBS eligibility as of 1 November 2022.

Antiviral treatments, taken as a tablet or capsule, help prevent COVID-19 infection from becoming severe – but they need to be started early after symptom onset or testing positive.

To support prompt treatment of patients as of 1 November 2022, medical practitioners and nurse practitioners will be able to add Lagevrio® and Paxlovid® to their Prescriber Bag supplies.

A complete list of current Prescriber Bag medicines is available on the PBS website.

Additional information can be found in the Covid 19 Fact sheets.