Access to NDSS products and diabetes medicines
Updated 5 October 2021.
Home delivery of medicines and NDSS products by pharmacies
Home delivery is a good option if you are isolating, are more vulnerable to serious illness, or prefer to stay at home.
To find out more about the Home Medicines Service for vulnerable groups and people in isolation see Getting medicines during coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions on the Department of Health website.
To make things easier during COVID-19, people with diabetes do not need to sign some NDSS forms to access services and diabetes products.
Health professionals are able to complete forms without the need for co-signing by the person with diabetes. This temporary change includes:
- NDSS Registration form
- Syringe or Pen Needle Access form (previously known as Medication Change form)
- Continuous and Flash Glucose Monitoring Eligibility Access forms
- Insulin Pump Consumable Access form.
In addition, the requirement for a Blood Glucose Monitoring Strip (BGMS) Six Month Access form to be completed has been temporarily suspended. This means people with type 2 diabetes who do not use insulin will not need to have a form completed by a health professional to receive subsidised access to BGMS through the NDSS.
The only NDSS form that people with diabetes will be required to sign is the Personal Details Update form which is needed if a person is changing their name. Supporting documents will also need to be provided.
This is a temporary arrangement during COVID-19 designed to make things easier for people with diabetes.
You can access all forms here.
To make it easier for people with type 2 diabetes during COVID-19, the Australian Government has suspended the requirement for a Blood Glucose Monitoring Strip Six Month Access form to be completed by your doctor or credentialled diabetes educator (CDE).
Effective from 3 April 2020, an automatic six-month extension has been provided for all people with type 2 diabetes not using insulin.
This means people with type 2 diabetes who do not use insulin do not need to have a form completed by a health professional to receive subsidised access to BGMS. People will need to simply visit their local pharmacy (NDSS Access Point) the next time they need to access BGMS. Note: people may be able to avoid a visit and should ask their pharmacy if they can deliver the BGMS along with their medicines to their home.
People with diabetes are still encouraged to contact their doctor or CDE to discuss blood glucose monitoring and any changes to their diabetes management they may need during COVID-19 restrictions. Health professionals including GPs and CDEs are offering telephone and online appointments for people with diabetes during COVID-19 restrictions.
This is a temporary arrangement during COVID-19.
Diabetes Australia continues to encourage people with diabetes not to stockpile medications or diabetes products. This will help ensure there are enough products available for everyone with diabetes who needs them.
The Australian Government has advised there is no national shortage of NDSS products or insulin or other diabetes-related medicines.
However, in recent weeks there have been very high orders for NDSS products, and some people have ordered more product than they would normally need. This has resulted in some short term, local out-of-stock situations in some pharmacies.
As a temporary measure, people will now be able to order three (3) boxes of NDSS products including blood glucose monitoring strips, urine monitoring strips, pen needles, and syringes.
There will also be a limit of two (2) boxes for insulin pump consumables (IPCs) for any order. This includes:
- 2 x boxes of infusion sets or cannulas (an average supply for two months)
- 2 x boxes of reservoirs/ cartridges (an average supply for two months).
For the vast majority of people with diabetes, these limits represent well over one month’s supply.
There may be some exceptions where people may need more than these supply amounts, such as people living remotely. People who need to order more than these amounts should contact the NDSS Helpline on 1800 637 700.
Access to continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) and flash glucose monitoring (Flash GM) products through the NDSS remain unchanged.
This page will be updated regularly should there be changes to product availability.
Please visit the Therapeutic Goods Administration website for the latest information about the availability of diabetes medicines.