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PBS Special Arrangement extended

Published 13 November 2020

The Commonwealth Government has announced that the National Health (COVID-19 Supply of Pharmaceutical Benefits) Special Arrangement 2020 (the PBS Special Arrangement), to support the COVID-19 pandemic response, has been extended to 31 March 2021.


These PBS Special Arrangements allow a prescriber to send a digital image, such as fax or email, of a paper prescription to a dispenser. Image-based prescriptions refer to the digital transfer, such as fax or email, of paper prescriptions and are not electronic prescriptions. 

To support the PBS Special Arrangement, provisions within the Health (Drugs and Poisons) Regulation 1996 exempt prescribers from having to provide the original paper prescription to the dispenser after sending through an image-based prescription, except for prescriptions for controlled drugs, restricted drugs of dependency, and anabolic steroids which must be provided to the dispenser within seven days. Further information on the arrangements for image-based prescriptions are detailed within the factsheets below:

Last updated: 13 November 2020