This is information about how to get free Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs) if you are eligible. The information is taken from the Services Australia and Australian Department of Health websites.
You do not need to contact the government to claim your free RATs.
You can pick up your free RATs from a participating community pharmacy (chemist). It would be best to ring your local chemist before you visit them, to check whether they have RATs available. If you need help finding a chemist, you can look on the Pharmacy Guild of Australia website. Keep in mind, supply is subject to availability.
To get free RATs, you must hold one of these cards:
- Commonwealth Seniors Health Card
- Health Care Card
- Low Income Health Care Card
- Pensioner Concession Card
- Department of Veterans’ Affairs Gold, White or Orange card.
You need to show either of the following at the pharmacy:
- your digital card in the Express Plus Centrelink mobile app
- your physical card.
This means you can use your digital copy if you’ve lost your physical card.
You can get a carer or guardian to pick up your RATs if you’re eligible but can’t get them yourself. They will need to show your card when they go to the pharmacy.
You will need to give consent to the pharmacy to record your concession card details. The pharmacy will check and confirm your details, including whether RATs have already been provided to you.
The pharmacy will give you a minimum of 2 RATs at a time for each eligible individual. You can access up to 10 RATs over a 3 month period (maximum of 5 in a 1 month period) through community pharmacies.
RATs will be increasingly available from pharmacies in the coming weeks. Phone ahead of your visit to check that they are participating in the free RATs program and have any in stock.
Free RATs are only available to eligible concession card holders through participating community pharmacies.