New South Wales COVID-19 updates

This page contains the latest updates and information for pharmacists in New South Wales.


For nationally relevant information visit PSA’s dedicated COVID-19 web page.

NSW Health Workforce EOI Portal

The NSW Ministry of Health is working quickly to strengthen the state’s health services workforce during the COVID-19 response. To streamline this process across the state, NSW Health is centrally coordinating the participation of allied health professionals.


These processes will be coordinated through the online NSW Health Workforce Expression of Interest (EOI) Portal


The online portal enables individuals and organisations to express their interest in supporting the COVID-19 response. This portal is now live. The Ministry has engaged Randstad to monitor and assess the EOI applications. Randstad will provide NSW Health with a central database of workers who are available for deployment as required by NSW Health organisations based on matching to geographic area and skills.


The portal will not duplicate local recruitment processes and Local Health Districts/ Specialty Health Networks initiatives should continue to proceed. The portal will provide extra support during periods of heightened workforce demand or to fill workforce gaps anticipated during this time.


Applicants are asked questions about professional registration, clinical and non-clinical experience, specialties as well as basic demographic information. The portal complements the AHPRA pandemic sub-register to support nurses, midwives, doctors and pharmacists to return to practice under limited registration. It also gives organisations the opportunity to submit information regarding their capacity and availability to assist with any additional workforce demands.


Find more information here.

Community pharmacists in NSW can now accept image-based prescriptions received by email or fax from a medical practitioner or nurse practitioner.
Key points:

  • Digital image can be sent only via email or fax
  • Pharmacist must print and keep copy of prescription
  • Repeats must be kept at pharmacy
  • S4D and S8 (Controlled Drugs) excluded
  • Applies to prescriptions issued by doctors and nurse practitioners
  • Change is in place until at least 4 April 2021


Five new S4D Medicines


In a significant change, five additional substances identified have been added in Appendix D of the NSW Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Regulation 2008, including:

  • pregabalin
  • quetiapine
  • tramadol
  • zolpidem
  • zopiclone


As with any S4D medicine, prescriptions for these medicines can only be dispensed for up to six months from the date of issue.


A list of all Schedule 4 Appendix D medicines is available on the NSW Health website.


PSA has been advised this includes prescriptions which were written before the date of this change. For example, a prescription for quetiapine dated 1 September 2019 is now expired.


NSW Health has prepared FAQs available here.

The current testing criteria in New South Wales can be found here.

HealthPathways is an online clinical and referral information portal used by clinicians at the point of care. HealthPathways provides access to management and treatment options on a range of clinical presentations and information about local clinical services and their referral processes.


Pharmacists that reside within the PHNs below can access health pathways, particularly the pathway relevant to COVID-19 response, for best practice treatment and management.

NSW Health has published a suggested action plan for community pharmacy OTP dosing points as a contingency plan for the potential impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Access information on the suggested strategies provided for consideration and implementation as appropriate here.


Access information for pharmacies supplying OTP for patients in self-isolation from COVID-19 here.


Access a copy of the suggested delivery procedure here.

Contact the Public Health Unit on 1300 066 055.

The location of COVID-19 respiratory clinics are available via the NSW Health website.

PHN Phone Email Website
Central and Eastern Sydney 1300 986 991
Hunter New England and Central Coast 1300 859 028
Murrumbidgee 02 6923 3100
Nepean Blue Mountains 02 4708 8100
North Coast 02 6618 5400
Northern Sydney 02 9432 8250
South Eastern NSW 1300 069 002
South Western Sydney 02 4632 3000
Western NSW 1300 699 167
Western Sydney 02 8811 7100

If you have any queries or are looking for the latest, up-to-date advice regarding COVID-19 in your state or territory, please contact your local PSA office.