Find out about coronavirus (COVID-19) treatments available outside of hospital, including information on free prescriptions and lateral flow tests.
Closure of the COVID-19 Antivirals and Therapeutics Taskforce on 31 March 2023
In line with the government’s strategy of living with COVID-19, the COVID-19 Antivirals and Therapeutics Taskforce closed on 31 March 2023.
The taskforce worked with NHS England (NHSE) and devolved administrations to ensure access to community-based treatments for coronavirus (COVID-19) for UK patients. The arrangements for accessing treatments described on this page are therefore subject to change in spring and summer 2023.
Find the most up to date information on available COVID-19 treatments and how to access them on the NHS website.
Access to treatments
Since December 2021, non-hospitalised patients have accessed treatments for coronavirus (COVID-19) through the following ways:
1. PANORAMIC national study
The PANORAMIC national study is run by the University of Oxford. It is investigating groups of people that will benefit most from COVID-19 antiviral treatments. Eligible participants are recruited to the study through participating GP practices.
2. COVID-19 medicines delivery units (CMDUs)
High-risk patients with a positive COVID-19 test result are contacted by a clinician from a CMDU to discuss whether they are suitable for treatments. The clinician is responsible for assessing and deciding which treatment option is most appropriate, taking into account any existing conditions of the patients.
This patient pathway is subject to change in 2023. Read more about treatments for COVID-19 that are being deployed on the NHS website.
Patients may be eligible for treatment if they have a condition set out in Higher-risk patients eligible for COVID-19 treatments: independent advisory group report (March 2023) agreed by the COVID-19 Therapeutics Clinical Review Panel.
People that may be eligible for COVID-19 treatments are also eligible for free COVID-19 rapid lateral flow tests. Check your eligibility online or call 119.
Paying for treatments
On 31 March 2023, the prescription waiver arrangements for antiviral medicines to be supplied for free to patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 and who are eligible to receive antiviral treatments for COVID-19 via CMDUs ended.
Eligibility for exemption from charges depends on whether someone:
- is in receipt of certain qualifying benefits
- is pregnant or has recently had a baby
- is of qualifying age
- is in qualifying full-time education
- gets a war pension
- has a qualifying medical condition
Read more about who can get free prescriptions on the NHS website.
This waiver will continue to apply to therapeutic treatments made available through the HEAL and STIMULATE-ICP trials. Find out more about clinical trials for COVID-19.
COVID-19 treatment data
This publication is updated every Thursday, and covers treatments administered in the community and patients treated in hospital settings (but it does not include information relating to treatments administered in clinical trials).
The UK Health Security Agency also publishes regular technical briefings on COVID-19 therapeutic agents.
- Finding new COVID-19 treatments (National Institute for Health and Care Research)