COVID-19 antiviral medication no longer available for free in Nova Scotia – CBC

A normal 5-day course of Paxlovid costs $1,288

May 29, 2024

A costly drug used to treat people who are at risk of becoming severely ill or dying after contracting COVID-19 is no longer available free of charge in Nova Scotia.

Paxlovid has been free for eligible patients in Nova Scotia since early 2022, but that has changed now that Ottawa is no longer paying to supply provinces with the antiviral.

Michelle Thompson, Nova Scotia’s health minister, said Wednesday the antiviral has been added to the list of drugs covered by the province’s Pharmacare programs.

That means those not enrolled in those programs will have to rely on their private health plans to cover the cost or they’ll pay out of pocket if they’re uninsured.

“There are a number of ways in which people access medications throughout this province,” said Thompson. “And if we see that there is a gap, we will we react to that.”

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