Amount of COVID-19 oral drugs requested by private doctors via online platform adjusted

     A Government spokesman today (April 24) reiterated that it has been closely monitoring the usage of COVID-19 oral drugs, and in light of the recent epidemic situation, the number of standard courses of each of the two COVID-19 oral drugs private doctors can request via the dedicated online platform set up by the Government will be increased to 10 courses per order with immediate effect.

     The Government has earlier set up an online platform enabling private doctors who have registered under the Electronic Health Record Sharing System (eHRSS) to make requests for provision of the two COVID-19 oral drugs, namely Paxlovid and Molnupiravir, and prescribe to "Eligible Persons" who are infected for free. The Government has been closely monitoring the situation of prescriptions by private doctors via the platform. In view of the recent increasing COVID-19 activity, private doctors' demand for relevant drugs as well as the number of people they have prescribed COVID-19 oral drug have also increased.

     After reviewing the stock of Government-procured COVID-19 oral drugs, the Government decided to relax the number of courses that private doctors can request via the platform each time in order to better address the recent situation. The relevant setting of the platform has been adjusted today and the number of standard courses of each drug that can be requested per order has been increased to 10 courses from six courses.

     The Department of Health has issued a letter notifying private doctors of the relevant arrangement and reminding them the oral drugs requested via the Government online platform could only be prescribed to "Eligible Persons" who are infected. They should also remind patients not to save or transfer the unused drugs. After private doctors log in to the platform to make the requests, a drug distributor will distribute the drugs concerned to their selected practice address among those they have registered with the eHRSS. The distributor will distribute the drugs on the following working day for those requests made before 4pm during weekdays.

     Currently, the two types of COVID-19 oral drugs supplied in Hong Kong have been registered as pharmaceutical products in Hong Kong in accordance with the Pharmacy and Poisons Regulations (Cap. 138A). They could only be supplied to healthcare institutions and doctors in public and private sectors. Private medical institutions can now order the two COVID-19 oral drugs directly from drug manufacturers and provide them for non-eligible COVID-19 patients in need.

     ‚ÄčThe Government will continue to monitor the relevant situation and would make adjustments on the platform settings at appropriate time according to the epidemic situation, drug usage amount and demand. The list of private doctors registered with the eHRSS who have obtained the COVID-19 oral drugs for managing COVID-19 cases is published on to facilitate the public in receiving treatment.

Ends/Monday, April 24, 2023
Issued at HKT 20:30