Can you fill US prescriptions in Aus/NZ

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#1
new york, new york, USA
330 Posts
Joined Dec 2001
in case of emergency or if I run out of pills because I stayed longer than expected.
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#2
Arlington, Virginia
2,633 Posts
Joined Sep 2010
No.

If you think there is any chance you will stay longer than expected and have a prescription that is going to run out while you are overseas, either: 1) see your doctor for a new prescription or 2) have your pharmacist contact your doctor to allow you to get a refill ahead of time. (That's what I did when I was on a lengthy overseas trip.)

If there is an emergency in Australia, there are "walk-in" clinics and emergency rooms where you can get a prescription from a doctor.
#3
3,183 Posts
Joined May 2006
No. I don't think you can fill a prescription written by a doctor from a different country.

If possible, get a repeat prescription filled before you leave home.

If not, take a photocopy of your original prescription and you will have to visit a doctor in practice in Australia or NZ, depending on which country you are in.

The copy of your prescription will enable the Aus/NZ doctor to be sure of exactly what medication you are taking (although some drugs may have different names in different countries).
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#4
perth australia
1,543 Posts
Joined Dec 2008
You would have to visit an Australian Doctor and get a script from them. This probably wouldn't be covered by your travel insurance - so could be an expensive exercise. America is not one of the reciprocal (can't spell) countries. Best bet is to bring extra script medicine with you. There may be a misconstrued "connection" as our medical system is also called Medicare - but is not affiliated to America. A quick call/email to an Australian pharmacist will confirm this
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#5
Melbourne Australia
894 Posts
Joined Mar 2012
Originally posted by dizzy1948
You would have to visit an Australian Doctor and get a script from them. This probably wouldn't be covered by your travel insurance - so could be an expensive exercise. America is not one of the reciprocal (can't spell) countries. Best bet is to bring extra script medicine with you. There may be a misconstrued "connection" as our medical system is also called Medicare - but is not affiliated to America. A quick call/email to an Australian pharmacist will confirm this
I would also think that as a non resident the prescription may well be charged at full price....not at the Commonwealth Government PBS pricing ( I assume only tax payers and residents pay the PBS pricing....this is only a guess).

For the OP the Commonwealth heavily subsidise certain medications via a funding system called the PBS. For example I get 2 Epipens as its required for my allergy and the PBS price is $36 for 2 needles/pens. Whereas I think the non PBS pricing is up around the $130 mark each!!! Quite a saving...
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#6
Sydney, Australia
1,644 Posts
Joined Jun 2010
The subsidies under the PBS are for Australian residents AND visitors from a limited number of countries.

Who is eligible for the PBS?
The Scheme is available to all Australian residents who hold a current Medicare card.

Overseas visitors from countries with which Australia has a Reciprocal Health Care Agreement (RHCA) are also eligible to access the Scheme. Australia currently has RHCAs with the United Kingdom, Ireland, New Zealand, Malta, Italy, Sweden, the Netherlands, Finland, Norway, Belgium and Slovenia.

Residents of these countries must show their passports when lodging a prescription to prove their eligibility or they can contact Department of Human Services and get a Reciprocal Health Care Agreement Card to prove their eligibility. Some overseas visitors may not be eligible for this card.

Only those eligible for the PBS will receive subsidised medication and every time you present your script to the pharmacist, you will need to provide your Medicare card.

Eligible veterans may need to present their DVA card in addition to their Medicare card.

With your consent, the pharmacist may (at their discretion) keep a record of your Medicare number so that you do not have to show the actual card every time you lodge a script


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#7
Geelong - Australia
2,974 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
To answer the original question specifically :

1. NO Overseas scripts are not recognized by Pharmacies in Australia ( and vice versa,.)

2. If you need more of your medications whilst in Australia then firstly you go to a GP (A General Practitioner) at any Medical Practice/Clinic. He will write out an Australian Script which you then present at any Australian Pharmacy.

Australian Pharmacies carry all the drugs and more that Overseas and US Pharmacies stock . NB: You can not just go to an Australian Pharmacy and ask for Prescription medications, you must have a script from an Australian GP. Overseas scripts are not accepted .
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