Find out what steps to take if you have lost your Medicare, DVA or Centrelink card, medication or prescription due to bushfires or have been without electricity for an extended period.

Lost medications, prescriptions or cards

Speak to a pharmacist if due to bushfires you do not have or have lost your:

  • medication
  • prescription
  • or Medicare, DVA or Centrelink card.

In accordance with emergency supply provisions, you can receive a 3 day supply of many medications without a prescription.

If you require an urgent supply of oral contraceptives or cholesterol lowering medicine (statins), pharmacists can dispense a single PBS quantity to you, consistent with continued dispensing guidelines.

Refrigerated medicines

Some medicines require storage in a refrigerator (between +2°C and +8°C). Temperature sensitive medicines deteriorate and lose effectiveness if not refrigerated. Examples of these medicines are vaccines, insulin, thyroxine tablets, immune therapies, some eye drops, some hormone products and some antibiotic mixtures for children.

If electricity has been cut off for an extended period and the quality of refrigerated medicines has been compromised, the medicines should be discarded and replaced as soon as possible.

If the medicine is essential to sustain health (e.g., insulin), the medicine should continue to be used until a new supply is available.

Evacuating with refrigerated medicines

As part of your household emergency preparedness planning, check with your pharmacist about emergency storage of refrigerated medicines and have a cool pack and cooler bricks on hand.

Do not freeze medicines.

More information

If you are concerned about the safety or storage of a particular medicine, contact your pharmacist or doctor or contact Health Direct on 1800 022 222 for guidance.

For further information on storing insulin, refer to the National Diabetes Service Scheme (NDSS) or contact the NDSS helpline on 1300 136 588.​​

(Content via NSW Health)