Following the Australian Government announcement to allocate $25 million to fund home medicine services in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, Australia Post has announced the launch of its Pharmacy Home Delivery Service.
From Monday, pharmacies around the country can offer free delivery on prescriptions to their customers and take advantage of the recently announced increased Australian Government rebate and Australia Post’s unrivalled national network.
The initiative incorporates Australia Post’s contactless delivery in line with current Covid-19 guidelines.
The new delivery option will support vulnerable Australians, including those isolating themselves at home on the advice of a medical practitioner, people over 70 and people with chronic health conditions. The initiative has been developed in association with the Pharmacy Guild of Australia and allows vulnerable members of the community to receive medication and other essential supplies (under 500grams) through Australia Post’s Express Post network, once a month, and pharmacies can receive the full cost back through government rebate.
Federal Minister for Health, the Hon Greg Hunt MP, welcomed Australia Post delivering much-needed medications to Australians and helping to protect vulnerable members of the community.
“In these challenging and unprecedented times it is important that vulnerable members of the community, and those in self-isolation, can continue to access their medications. To support this, the Morrison Government has allocated $25 million to fund home medicines services, which will enable patients to have their PBS prescriptions delivered to their home,” Minister Hunt said.
Federal Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, thanked Australia Post for supporting the Government’s new pharmacy delivery scheme.
“Australia Post plays an important role in our communities, connecting Australians not only to each other, but also goods and services they rely on. Its extensive postal network will now also support Australians to safely access their PBS medications over the coming months. Australia Post staff and posties do a terrific job and I commend their commitment and community spirit during these challenging times for all Australians,” Minister Fletcher said.
Group Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Australia Post, Christine Holgate, said coronavirus is having a significant impact on the lives of all Australians and making home delivery quick and easy for local pharmacies is vital.
“We know so many people rely on their local pharmacy for essential medication, particularly the vulnerable and elderly who may not be able to visit their local store. Making delivery to people’s home is critical at this time,” Ms Holgate says.
“We also understand the challenges facing small business at the moment and we have designed a simple system that will allow pharmacies to offer Express Post delivery to their customers from Monday, allowing them to continue to trade.
“Australia Post remains open for business during this very trying time. Our Post Offices are open and our posties and drivers are still out delivering each and every day. With this new service, customers will receive access to quick delivery of medication by a brand known and trusted by them.”
George Tambassis, National President of the Pharmacy Guild, said this important service will add to the options available for the many community members who rely on medication to maintain their health and wellbeing.
“Pharmacies provide critical services to members of the community who require medicines and health advice, with many Australians reliant on continued medication to support their long-term health. In any one year there are over 465 million individual patient visits to community pharmacies around the country,” Mr Tambassis said.
“With their extensive network across the country, the service Australia Post will deliver for our members gives us confidence and reassurance our customers will get the support they need during this difficult and uncertain time.”
Deliveries can be made to the home, or to a local Post Office or 24/7 Parcel Locker for pick-up.
For more information click here and for further information on the government rebate visit health.gov.au/resources/publications/covid-19-national-health-plan-primary-care-home-medicines-services-to-support-the-response-to-covid-19.
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