HIV antiretroviral medication is affordable for most Australian residents living with HIV, because Medicare subsidises the cost of HIV antiretroviral medication through the Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).
People living with HIV who are not eligible for Medicare can find it costly to access their HIV antiretroviral medication. People living with HIV who are ineligible for Medicare have several different options to access their HIV medication in NSW.
People living with HIV who are ineligible for Medicare, have the following options to receive free HIV antiretroviral medication.*
Option 1: you can see a public hospital-based doctor and get your HIV medication dispensed from the hospital pharmacy. The cost of consultations and any required pathology will be covered by the hospital.
Option 2: you can see a regular s100 prescriber through a GP practice and pick up your HIV medication from a hospital pharmacy. You’ll need to cover the cost of the consultation, and any required pathology will need to be covered by yourself or the practice.
Option 3: you can see a doctor at a publicly funded sexual health clinic and get your HIV medication dispensed from a hospital pharmacy. The cost of consultations, and any required pathology will be covered by the sexual health clinic.
Option 4: you can access your HIV medication through the self-importation scheme at your own cost.
*any additional care or medication costs associated with side effects from treatment will not be covered by this government-funded scheme.
If you’re living with HIV in NSW and need any support to understand your options or navigate this process, please call Positive Life NSW on (02) 8357 8386, 1800 245 677 (freecall) or firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’re travelling to Australia, it’s recommended you organise your supply of HIV antiretroviral medication, before you arrive in Australia. If you’re already living in Australia, you can access your medication by either importing your personal HIV antiretroviral medication from your home country or import it from an online chemist for your own personal use.
Our Factsheet: Getting your HIV antiretroviral medication without Medicare offers several different options for people living with HIV who are ineligible for Medicare to access their HIV antiretroviral medication.
Medicare Ineligible & HIV Medication
page updated: 15 June 2023