COVID-19 antiviral treatments are now available to more people who are at risk of severe disease from COVID-19.
People who have a higher chance of getting very sick from COVID-19 and are eligible for treatment include:
- anyone aged 70 years or older
- anyone aged 50 years or older who has two or more risk factors
- anyone aged 30 years or older and is Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander who have two or more risk factors
- anyone who is over 18 and is immunocompromised.
Oral antiviral medicines for COVID-19 treatment must be given within five days of symptoms starting. You should discuss antiviral treatment options with your doctor or health care professional before you get sick, so you have a plan to access these treatments quickly if you do test positive.
Even if you have a higher chance of severe illness from COVID-19, antiviral medicines may not be right for you. Your doctor will make an assessment as to whether antiviral medicines are needed and are safe for you to take. They will also consider other medical conditions you may have and any other medications you are taking.
It is important to remember that although antivirals help prevent COVID-19 infection from becoming severe, they are not a replacement for vaccination or COVID-safe behaviours.