[Insufficient Details for Upcoming Deal] 10 Free Rapid Antigen Tests for Pensioners & Low Income Health Card Holders @Pharmacies

Moved to Forum: Original Link

This is simply a public service announcement for pensioners (various types eligible)

Just announced today 06-01-2022, this afternoon, so details a bit sketchy………(and I know kits are virtually impossible to get over the counter at the moment - says government thinks they can solve that over a 2 week timeframe). Appears you need to visit a pharmacy with your pension card (various pension style schemes are eligible, you'll need to check), pharmacy takes those details and gives you a kit. Details go off to government who reimburse pharmacy.

Total number appears to be limited to 2 tranches of 5 tests (max 5 tests per month).

This would be a godsend for me as I can use it PLUS still-at-home kids could use them

National Cabinet agreed that up to 10 Rapid Antigen Tests over three months (a maximum of 5 in a month) will be made available free through pharmacies to people holding the following cards:

Pension Concession Card
Commonwealth Seniors Health Care Card
Department of Veterans' Affairs Gold, White or Orange Card
Health Care Card
Low Income Health Card

Mod: Deal Posted Moved to Forums [Insufficient Details for Upcoming Deal] - As the start date is undefined ("available in the next 2 weeks"), the deal is unpublished due to our Insufficient Details for Upcoming Deals. It can be posted again in the future once details and the start date is finalised. We have moved this post to the forums to retain discussion, rather than unpublishing it as we usually would.

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  • People will sell them to make profit

  • +2

    I'll get my parents to get some, put them on FB marketplace, thanks Scotty

    Good that you thought this one through

  • +1

    We could have had a national body to sort this (and vaccines, and quarantine) out properly by actually taking expert advice. But instead, Snotty hand picked a bunch of gas executives to run the 'National Covid-19 Coordination Committee' to frack the Northern Territory, which is now under investigation because it was so obviously corrupt.

    Honestly, it's beyond satire.

  • +14

    I am a pharmacist and we have heard nothing about this - PLEASE don't ring your local pharmacy in the next couple of days asking for these, because we

    A - Don't have them

    B - Have zero idea how they are going to be distributed

    • -4

      Why are you price gouging?
      These cost less than $0.50 in bulk.

      • +7

        Well, as an employee pharmacist I have no control over pricing.

        Having seen the invoices, I can tell you they definitely cost significantly more than 50 cents.

        • +3

          I am sure all the pharmacy owners would like to know where you could source $0.50 per pop in bulk because it is currently costing a lot more than $0.50 to get more stock from the suppliers.

      • +2

        price gouging?

        well, you can thank the gov for now defining that 20% over RRP is the limit for price gouging, so now everyone selling them knows how much they can mark them up without punishment.

        • +1

          Friendly reminder the NSW Liberal Government also abolished the pricing regulation act in 2019 in place since WWII that prevented unjust price gouging :)

    • Why on earth was Questor downvoted?

      Seems the Government is shifting the target to blame to pharmacists. We all know the Government will surely bungle this roll out.

    • Well you need to find out, do you really think anyone is going to read this and take it on board?

      Not much you can do except set up a voicemail and tell people you can't help them, and also have a massive sign in the shop with all the details and if anyone asks you just point to the sign.

  • If anyone is looking for stock at pharmacies this may help … I managed to find a couple of kits for a holiday through it.


    • I had no luck with pharmacies and this website. None of the places I went had anything, but they were showing on the site

      • +1

        Same here. I think it's best to ring and ask the pharmacy before going. I have already wasted time visiting multiple pharmacies just because they were on that site.

    • +2

      Your website is no good mate, showing in stock yesterday but no stock

  • Might as well be giving away free GPUs, availability is pretty similar.

  • -2

    More free things for the old, dole bludgers and poor, while those that actually pay the taxes continue to get nothing… Australia sucks

    • +1

      Go live somewhere else then mate, maybe try the US where you get shafted on all fronts, healthcare, pay just to name a few.

      • Nah, I like it here. It's just a complete crock of shit that MY taxes have to pay for dole bludgers, drug addicts, and the unemployed (old people im happy to support) to (profanity) around, and get more and more free stuff while I work my ass off

  • +1

    Meanwhile in the UK, anyone who wants one can pick up packs of RATs easily from pharmacies, libraries, petrol stations, information centres, etc. For free.

    • +8

      Now you know. In Australia everything has a price. ScoMo says we can't make everything for free. It is tax payer money which his party used for grants to do nothing or buy votes. Then there is the glorious JobKeeper payments that we know should have been clawed back but obviously went to their party donors.

      • +4

        Cant make everything for free, except for him and his fellow cabinet members…

  • +3

    Why is it a deal? Probably a PSA. It is like posting council rates concessions as a deal.

  • +1

    Gumtree and Marketplace are going to be so flooded with these soon that everyone will be undercutting Gerry Harvey.

    Why these aren’t free for all is a loss to me.

    • +3

      Because the ruling party has now determined they can give away tax payer money to companies that don't need it (JobKeeper) and grants that aren't needed (sports grants for womens change rooms in mens clubs, car parks in their electorates) but obviously when it doesn't benefit their voter base or donors then suddenly there isn't money to go around.

  • Hmmmm? what about today's Emergency National Cabinet? lol

    Not a concrete bargain - will change again. Who wants to bet?

    • +1

      Associated? Jenny is that you?!?

      Look I'm sorry for throwing you under the bus (again) but the journalist caught me completely off guard with that question about where do you source your RATs from.

      • +1

        Oops! I have no idea how that happened? Must be because I was rushing haha.

        See if this works (unticking box in this comment) otherwise can a Mod fix it please if possible?

        • +1

          It's because it's in the worst place possible, stupid tick box, makes me so angry!

          • @TEER3X: No, I need to call another EMERGENCY national cabinet (all you wimpy premiers get on Zoom stat right now) so it's actually not a rush it's just an EMERGENCY!!!

      • +1

        Look the Prime Minister's family is affected by this virus the same as any other Australian who can safely Isolate in a seperate house to their members, has access to unlimited RATs for staff and visitors and is able to dictate their own work hours and conditions.

  • -1

    No one realised rat is not accurate? You could be testing 5x to finally get a positive.
    So, thats your quota for a month gone

    Whats the purpose of testing anyway. Its not curing. If you get this flu just rest like other flu.

    • Agree with the 1st part. I've heard notoriously poor results from RATs, i've yet to hear anyone who tested positive with the RAT when they had actual covid

      • Lol, so because you have heard it means they don't work?

        The efficacy rate is listed on the TGA website. I can assure you they are not "notoriously poor"

      • I tested positive on a rat and a PCR test. So now you have.

        • I know people who tested negative on rat and positive on a PCR taking the test the same day. Could be because they are morons though

  • The amazon deal is back in stock for those interested


  • +1

    This belong to the forum.

  • So now the pensioners who get free tests just have to visit 17 chemists to get there hands on the free test

    • Thought the facemask hoarding was bad, or electronic shortages, it seems pensioners will be the new scalpers over everyone selling while not working to tax payers, omg

      Well best of luck everyone at election time.

  • +5

    Meanwhile us front line workers pay full price. 🙄. This government screws those who help them.

    • Surely they're tax deductible, you need a better accountant

  • So many experts! Our future is in good hands (assuming said experts get off armchair forums and into the political system to make a difference). If you will do better, step forward, your country needs you

    • +1

      Yeah, and attend the how many Emergency National Cabinets so far just to change when and how many RATs you need to do?

    • +1

      Can't due to multilayer factors, first if you cannot win a election, let alone join the council but have genuine morally helpful solutions at the cost of money down the drain, then you are out.

      But what about the election, unless you're that fat useless (no offense to those a few pounds over)mining five fingered Palmer, or the appointed union leader that sold anyone out with aggressive tactics to win a chance at parliament forming great ties, or lastly the Rich club where all parties dig into political donations to move their political agenda.

      I say we have two options appoint Gerry Harvey as slowmos successor and see appliances sell through the roof in Canberra (not that Gerry would do a thing but increase the tax) or disband the union jack, create a mandatory requirement for those in parliament to be vetted holding the oath and standards with a royale commission towards accountability, and lastly political donations.

      There's always a rat in every cabinet.

  • +1

    Looks like I’ll have to line up for a PCR with all my other scum buddies that earn over 100k then.

  • Am I the only one who initially read "Free Rapid Antigen Tests for Prisoners"?

    • yes, yes, I think you are lol

  • +1

    Only way SloMo and Dom Parrot are going to get voted back in is if we're all dead and can't vote lol

    Is that their intention?

    • Too many people that don't think before they vote for this to be a certainty or even likely

  • Slow on vax and now slow on RAT. This government doesn’t learn at all.

  • Why no more pcr? Did they run out of money to pay to the labs for each test? Now it’s up to each person to pay up for tests?

    • they just aren't doing the bigger subsidies to the testing pathology companies anymore to save $$$. atm you can still get PCR, IF YOU HAVE SYMPTOMS, otherwise you have to buy your own RAT…..they are phasing out the PCR and the places will start handing you a RAT instead (if and when they get any) again, IF YOU HAVE SYMPTOMS….so, for god's sake, say you have a sore throat at the very least lol

  • +2

    Isn't it time we vote the liberal party out… My gosh.. it's much more cost effective to supply everyone with free RATs than PCR testing which cost upwards of $200 per test.
    My pharmacy paid $2.12c (incl GST) per test for the 5 pack RAT test. We were selling them $27-35 per 5pack depending on brand. I'm sure the government would be able to get the RAT tests much cheaper than we do.

    PS* our supplier is out of stock at the moment…

    • You are now only allowed to sell the packs with a 20% mark-up so you will have to fix that.

    • My pharmacy paid $2.12c (incl GST) per test for the 5 pack RAT test

      People should just stay at home. It is cheaper. Could subscribe to all the TV streaming services plus buy room full of gym equipment and it would be cheaper.

  • +1

    Self reporting of positive a result; that will bring the numbers down pre election.

    • +2

      For sure, ScoMo will miraculously lower the numbers by manipulating the definition of Covid postive and narrowing the testing criteria.

      • +1

        Just let everyone go on overseas holidays, positive tests overseas don't hit our results right?

        • But it's a two way street? Tourists will come here and may spread other variants if a new one is released

          • +1

            @Chocobros: Think they are going to scrap PCR test requirements for vaccinated international visitors. So that is another way to mess with the results.

      • +2

        As done with the unemployment figures which in reality sit closer to 10% than the widely reported figure.

  • +1

    Yeh its a great way to give COVID to pharmacy staff & shutdown their businesses. I'm sure they will distribute PPE gear - masks, face shields, gowns, etc to everyone before they announce it at least - NOT.

    • Bang on.. they won't do any of that!
      Utilise Australia post and send it out for free!

    • I know, what an idiotic idea this is? safer to just post out to people

  • Is this Australia wide or just NSW?

    • I think it's NSW, Victoria has free RAT as far as I know..

  • +1

    problem im seeing now is that alot of pharmacies are out of stock on rapid antigen tests and thats with selling them u think they will have stock when they are free?

  • +2

    On a slightly off topic note although I'm the same vein I went to buy cigarettes at Coles yesterday morning and there was a huge line which I'd never seen before and with my headphones in I asked one of the people in line 'is this for cigarettes' to which she nodded so I lived up kinda bewildered (about 25ppl at this point) eventually I get to the front of the line and I'm told I didn't need to line up this is for RAT's anyway someone came up and asked as the line behind me was now about 60 people turning the corner of the shipping centre if they had enough and if it was worth waiting which she told him they had plenty. They were only selling 2packs limited to 1 per person but they seemed to have a lot. This was Coles at Central West SC in Melbourne but I'd assume most Coles would be similar???
    I'm personally kinda pretending Omicron doesn't exist, I'm wearing my mask and I've had my booster shot so if I'm unlucky enough to get it so be it. I'm at the point now where beyond taking reasonable precautions I'm over it. I didn't buy any as I've kinda stopped reading the news lately so didn't even realise it was a thing but I might try to get a couple just in case (to avoid having to line up should I find myself with symptoms) but seriously I'm not spending another year in a complete panicked bubble over a strain that while more contagious has reduced symptoms for anyone vaccinated!
    TBH if I caught it at this point it would be a relief in some ways maybe it would give me a stronger immunity against a future strain?? (No I'm not advocating getting in on purpose) Over It !!!

    • -4

      Novak supporter?

      • +1

        Can you read?

        • -2

          Reads like you have recently swung over to the dark side.

          • @rifter: In all fairness to clarky it just seems like they are exasperated and are done with the whole COVID topic. They say they have gotten their booster so it seems like they have been doing the right things up until now.

            Novak on the other hand…

    • What I don't get is the sudden rush for RATs.

      People were sick of lock down, out of lock down they are onto the RATs like toilet paper 2020.

  • +2

    There is zero information to pharmacies and pharmacists themselves on how this will even work. How does it track against an individual? How will pharmacies be able to supply this when they can't even get stock?

    You're going to have 6 million people who hold one of the eligible cards showing up to pharmacies to demand RAT tests when they don't have any nor any means to police those who visit different pharmacies.

    Once again, a idea with zero thought on processes and real world implementation by ScoMo. Please do NOT show up to poor pharmacies who are already over worked and understaffed demanding this until proper processes and systems are in place.

    • They do have a system to track people already that's used for various pharmacy only drugs however I totally agree re stock levels. Hopefully as more ppl get stocks and supplies increase this will be less of an issue. Fingers X'd I guess

      • The systems for pharmacy only medications doesn't mean they are linked to all the pharmacies and the same states. If someone travels for work and permitted so and can collect for someone else there isn't a system in place currently to prevent collecting from various sites. Pharmacies also have to pay to use some of the systems that do record pharmacist only medication because it is a requirement of recording.

    • +1

      There is zero information to pharmacies and pharmacists themselves on how this will even work.

      You mean the same party that put in JobKeeper that pretty much depended on business self reporting. Those said businesses continued to claim JK even though they were making so much money they didn't know what to do with but pay dividends / share buy backs.

  • +1

    Not a deal, government paying for it, still our money. around $3 per test kit government probably bought it for $25, it would be a deal if it manufactured in Aus.

    • If the government really wanted to they could quickly put it to private tender and if they treated it like it was their own money I'm sure they could source kits fairly quickly for under $5 fully landed and perhaps even have them manufactured locally with the security (for finance and investment) a government supply contact would give but for some reason they are happy with $10+ wholesale price? Even if it was monthly tender contacts I imagine competition would be fierce as Australia is a pretty small population in the grand scheme of things?
      But hey we live in a meritocratic society right so clearly our politicians are the best people for the job? ;D

  • How much do these test kits cost?

    Can pensioners and low-income Australians make AUD 100 p/w by pharmacy shopping for the test kits?

    • I would say when they purchase it will be clocked against their medicare/govt benefit info, so they can't go over their max limit 5 per month/10 per 3 months. I am thinking there will be hoops to jump through to get any at all. Like they will have to have been a close contact, or showing symptoms etc as well….in which case this is stupid to be making possible covid positive people go to pharmacies to get them, as is the case now as well. The whole thing is a bloody balls up.

    • By that thinking they could go doctor/pharmacy shopping for any subsidised medication and sell it people who don't or overseas. Scumbags will be scumbags and if caught should be punished however it's pretty sinical to assume that's what people will be doing.
      I think all those people stealing tax dollars and the prospect of home ownership from younger/poorer generations through negative gearing and other forms of middle/upper class welfare is a far greater concern.

  • +3

    People who have concession cards don't need these tests, the people who support them do. I'm on full disability and very rarely leave the house so it's people such as carers, pharmacy and supermarket staff and all those delivery drivers who are absolutely critical in keeping us all going.

    • Orona is supposed to be so infectious that a fart from the neighbours can infect the whole house next door.

      Every household should have a full kit just in case the neighbours eat 🌮 for dinner.

      • Almost went out and bought a burrito kit but realised you meant a different kit

    • I hate the voting people's comments out of existence system on this site. MS 1000 raises a good point, so +1 from me. And I never down vote anybody.

  • +2

    "We've got you surrounded! Come and pay for testing kits for a pandemic we completely enabled!"


  • +1

    the strategy of 'Let 'er Rip' was meant to stimulate the economy as everyone assumed that either COVID was over, or that the Omicron variant did not matter, (not that Delta had actually gone away).
    In fact the people have been mostly quite sensible and are not going out and are wearing masks and isolating, which of course means two things.
    1. The 'Let 'er Rip' strategy is not getting the economy back to normal and
    2. The government can say that it is not their fault if people choose not to go out and spend, so they don't need to support business or anyone else.
    Here is an explanation of the PCR test unavailability from Kim Hatton:
    ' Feds are pushing so strongly to reduce PCR testing for COVID and shift to RAT. Yes of course the path labs are overloaded but there’s more to the story than that.
    Currently Medicare pays $110 for a PCR test, split between the path lab and whoever is collecting the sample. With tests reaching 270,000 a day that’s basically $30million per day out of fed budget.
    The plan is to reduce PCR tests down to around 50,000 a day saving $24 million a day.
    To fill the gap the plan is to use Rapid Antigen Tests which cost around $10 in bulk. The Feds will fund 50% of whatever the states buy.
    In theory the states would buy enough to bridge the gap ie 220,000 per day costing them$1.1 million and the Feds the same. Meaning fed expenditure drops from $30m per day to $7million.
    However that assumes the states buy enough which they haven’t. NSW has placed an order for 2 million which won’t even last 2 weeks assuming infection rates don’t increase - which of course they will.
    In practice what is more likely to happen is the the public will fund the majority of RATests themselves saving the Govt at least another million a day.
    That million a day then becomes part of the economy which comes out as economic growth the federal government has achieved and will use to argue how good a job they’ve done.' End Quote
    So if you do not have a PCR test and do not go to hospital, you are not recorded as a COVID case, so the statistics look better. RATS extortion pseudo inflates economy, wrongly suggests economy is ‘on track.’

    • That all sounds pretty good with the money side … I dont want to pay any more income tax … are you keen to pay more income tax?

      • +2

        We employed the fed govt to look after-health, education & welfare. Scomo has FAILED big time. Only looks after his big business buddies.

        • Yes Election Day will come one day, Scomo and his Liberals.

        • 150,000 tests per day x $85 = over $ 10 million per day on PCR test in NSW alone.
          One month = $300 million. Discount by 70%, the figure is still astronomical.
          Path Labs made the big bucks. Now it’s Big Pharma’s turn again with RAT tests on the voters expense.

  • Age pension eligibility is going to be raised to 87 years to give you youngsters time enough to pay off the mortgage on your $2 million bedsit and pay off the Scomo debt.

  • +3

    I love all the 'scomo' comments..

    its like theres a better option, they are all shit with their own 'friends' to look after…

    • +1

      Rubbish. Morrison and the Liberals have had some of the biggest policy failures of all time.

      Their corrupt dealings are published in many non mainstream/non billionaire owned media outlets.

      The federal Liberals are the most inept and incompetent government in Australian history.

      Links: https://www.ozbargain.com.au/comment/11592556/redir

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