How can I get my medication if I can’t get a prescription?

If you have not been able to access medical services or get to the doctor to receive your usual prescription and have an immediate need, you should contact your pharmacist (or a local pharmacy) about getting your essential medicines from the pharmacy without a prescription.

What medication can I get without a prescription?

Your pharmacist will be able to provide most medicines available on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) or the smallest standard pack of drugs not on the PBS.

What medication still requires a prescription?

Your pharmacist cannot supply certain medicines without a prescription including:

  • Schedule 8 drugs (S8) such as opioids, some benzodiazepines and stimulants
  • Drugs that are restricted to prescribing by certain specialist medical practitioners only including:
    • drugs listed in Regulation 19 of the Poisons Regulations (PDF 346KB)
    • this includes medicines such as certain fertility and cancer drugs and hydroxychloroquine.

How can I get my medicines if I’m in quarantine, self-isolating or staying at home?

Contact your doctor and/or pharmacy to discuss the options available, and to set up a plan that works best for you. You can use searches such as Google to locate your closest doctor or pharmacy if you are away from home.

Options to have your prescriptions sent to the pharmacy

  • Talk to your doctor about sending any new prescriptions directly to your pharmacy.
  • Your pharmacy may already have your repeat prescriptions on file.
  • Ask someone to assist – for example a family member, friend or neighbour can take your prescriptions to the pharmacy for you.
  • Post your prescriptions to the pharmacy or drop them off via a secure and contactless method (i.e. secure letterbox).

Collecting your medicines

  • Home delivery – talk to the pharmacy about delivery to your home or where you are staying; delivery may be made by a pharmacy staff member, Australia Post mail, couriers, or taxi services.
  • Ask someone to assist – a family member, friend or neighbour may collect your medicines from the pharmacy.

More information

To find out more, read: