COVID-19 Primary Care Update 09/05/2022

09 May 2022

Good evening,

Oral antiviral supplies in community pharmacies

While there are now two oral antiviral medications available on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) via streamlined authority prescription, there has been some initial difficulty accessing supplies via community pharmacies in SA. Several wholesalers now have both Paxlovid® and Lagevrio® available for ordering from their warehouses.

Pharmacies may need to call direct to order. If not already stocked on site, in many cases, metropolitan areas can have it available for dispensing within 24 hours of ordering and regional areas within 48 hours of ordering.

More information on oral antiviral treatments is available on the SA Health website.

Access to Medicare-rebated Telehealth consults

Under current Medicare rules, a patient must have an existing relationship (have had a face-to-face appointment within the past 12 months) with a general practice to be eligible to access a Medicare rebate for telehealth services by a GP at that practice.

It is important to note that there are specific exemptions from this requirement that allow unrestricted access to rebated telehealth services for patients in the following circumstances:

  • in isolation or quarantine due to COVID-19·experiencing homelessness
  • under 12 months of age
  • treated at an Aboriginal Medical Service or an Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service in a flood affected area
  • needing mental health support* requiring urgent after hours service in unsociable hours
  • undergoing eating disorder support or pregnancy counselling.

More information is available on the Services Australia website.

COVID-19 webinars

COVID vaccine information for GPs and service providers working with people living with distress or mental health issues

A webinar, held on Thursday 12 May at 9.00 am to 10.30 am, will provide information about the COVID-19 vaccines approved for use in Australia. This webinar is for GPs and service providers who work with people living with distress or mental health issues.

Sheryl Boniface from LELAN (Lived Experience Leadership and Advocacy Network), along with Professor Katina D’Onise from Wellbeing SA, will provide information about the COVID-19 vaccines and respond to questions that people may have.

This is an opportunity for GPs and service providers to have their vaccination concerns and questions addressed.

  • Register your attendance at this webinar

COVID-19 update, vaccination and paediatric guidance and discussion

SA PHNs in conjunction with SA Health is providing a COVID-19 update for Primary Health Care providers.

The webinar, held on Thursday 12 May at 6.30 pm to 8.00 pm, will include a COVID-19 update, as well as information on vaccination and paediatric guidance.

The Webinar will be facilitated by Dr Emily Kirkpatrick, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, SA Health and Professor Katina D’Onise, Executive Director, Prevention and Population Health, Wellbeing SA.

Dr Tom Goddard, Paediatric Respiratory and Sleep Medicine, Women’s and Children Hospital will be a guest speaker at the event.

Resources to support GPs using ScriptCheckSA 

ScriptCheckSA supports good clinical practice by alerting prescribers and pharmacists to patients who may be at an increased risk of harm from monitored drugs. However, it can be difficult to know what to do to support your patients if you think that they may be at risk of harm.

To help you provide quality care for your patients, the ScriptCheckSA online training modules contain resources, referral pathways and contact details for clinical and legislative advice in the one easily accessible location.

Patient specific resources, including printable handouts, FAQs, list of support services can be found on the ScriptCheckSA website.

Free online training, as well as resources and support services, can be found at www.scriptcheck.sa.gov.au.

Please direct any questions to Health.RTPM@sa.gov.au.

Please forward this update to any colleagues who may not have received it and contact us at Health.COVID-19GPLiaison@sa.gov.au to be added to our mailing list or with any other enquiries.

Dr Emily Kirkpatrick
Deputy Chief Public Health Officer Deputy Chief Medical Officer
Department for Health and Wellbeing