Australia Post has announced a new free service to help the vulnerable and those self-isolating access prescription medications without leaving their home.
Beginning on Monday, the Pharmacy Home Delivery Service will allow pharmacies around the country to offer free delivery on prescriptions to their customers.
The new delivery option will support vulnerable Australians, including those isolating themselves at home, people over 70 and people with chronic health conditions.
The initiative allows members of the community to receive medication and other essential supplies (under 500 grams) through Australia Post’s Express Post network once a month.
Pharmacies can then receive the full cost back through government rebate.
The new service launches following the Australian Government’s announcement to allocate $25 million to fund home medicine services in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
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 homes is critical at this time,” Ms Holgate said.
It’s hoped the new delivery service will also boost small businesses struggling as customers opt to stay home.
“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,” Ms Holgate said.
George Tambassis, National President of the Pharmacy Guild, said this important service would 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,” he said.
“In any one year there are over 465 million individual patient visits to community pharmacies around the country.”
Deliveries can be made to homes, or to a local Post Office or 24/7 Parcel Locker for pick-up.
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