More than two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, there are now several effective treatments for the disease. Two of those treatments are Paxlovid and Molnupiravir, antiviral pills for non-hospitalized patients. They are available by prescription to people infected with the COVID-19 virus who have conditions that put them at risk for severe illness.
Eligibility for Paxlovid and Molnupiravir:
People with certain health conditions like chronic lung disease or cancer are at higher risk for hospitalization or death from COVID-19 infection, as are people older than 65. Conditions that increase risk for severe COVID-19 include, but are not limited to:
- Type 1 or 2 diabetes
- Depression or schizophrenia
- Chronic lung or heart diseases, including moderate to severe asthma
- Dementia or other neurological conditions
- Down syndrome
- Cystic fibrosis
- Age may be a factor that contributes to higher risk
Check out the full list of eligible conditions from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Both Paxlovid and Molnupiravir must be taken within five days of symptom onset, and there are currently two ways to get a prescription:
- A health care provider prescribes them to you. Because these medications are only available at certain pharmacies, you can find the pharmacy closest to you that carries them by using this online locator tool. Type in your ZIP code, the distance range, then click on the drop-down menu “Locations to fill a prescription.” Currently, dozens of pharmacies in Oregon, located in most counties, carry Paxlovid and Molnupiravir. Pharmacies should not ask for any fees associated with the medication, including dispensing fees.
- If you don’t have access to a health care provider who can quickly determine your eligibility and write a prescription, the new federal Test-to-Treat (T2T) program is another option.
Here’s how it works:
- Using the online locator tool, type in your ZIP code and use the drop-down menu for “Locations with testing, medical visits, and medication (Test-to-Treat).”
- Find the site closest to you and call to make an appointment. For help in Spanish and more than 150 languages, call 800-232-0233.
- You may bring a positive COVID-19 test, or you can be tested once you arrive at the T2T site.
- After your COVID-19 infection is confirmed, a health care provider will determine if you are eligible for Paxlovid and Molnupiravir. This medical evaluation will be performed on site, either in person or by telephone or video call.
- If you’re eligible, the provider will call your prescription into the pharmacy on site or one close by.
If you have insurance the entire process is free, though some insurance policies will have a co-pay.
If you don’t have insurance, the COVID-19 test and medication are free, but you may be charged a fee for the medical evaluation. Pharmacies should not ask for any fees associated with the medication itself, including dispensing fees.
Currently there are seven Test-to-Treat locations in Oregon, mostly in the Portland region.
- Hillsboro (two locations)
- Happy Valley
- Warm Springs
Oregon Health Authority is working to expand access to the federal program to other parts of the state. You can make an appointment at the site closest to you using the online Test-to-Treat locator tool.