To facilitate telehealth consultations and access to medicines during the COVID-19 response, prescribers in Victoria are able to transmit a digital image of a prescription for a Schedule 4 medicine (excluding drugs of dependence) to pharmacists.
Under this temporary measure, which came into effect on 7 April 2020, prescriptions can be transmitted to a community pharmacy by email, SMS, facsimile or other electronic method for dispensing (Public health emergency order #4 (PHEO #4)).
This measure is in place until midnight 6 October 2020 unless earlier revoked.
The basic process is:
- Prescriber issues prescription, signed by hand or with image of their digital signature
- Prescriber prepares digital image of prescription
- Prescriber emails or faxes digital image of prescription to patient’s pharmacy of choice
- Pharmacist dispenses prescription and arranges supply to patient
- Prescriber keeps hard copy of the signed original paper prescription for two years