Elizabeth Goodsitt, 608-266-1683
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) announces a free telehealth service to streamline access to COVID-19 treatment. COVID-19 antiviral treatments must be taken within five days of symptoms starting, even if symptoms are mild, making it essential to quickly access a clinician for a prescription. Anyone 18 and older who tests positive for COVID-19 can have a telehealth consultation with a health care clinician within 5-30 minutes. If eligible, a clinician will prescribe an oral antiviral pill that reduces the risk for severe symptoms, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19. The prescription can be filled at over 600 pharmacies in the state. Insurance is not required. Those without pharmacy access can have their medicine shipped overnight.
“Providing telehealth access supports our commitment to health equity,” said Secretary-designee Karen Timberlake. “Telehealth is a quick, easy, and free way for individuals who may not be able to travel to a clinic, or who may not have insurance or health care, to learn if antiviral pills to treat COVID-19 are an appropriate treatment for them. We believe this will be especially important in extending our ability to serve rural, elderly, and other underserved populations.”
The COVID-19 Treatment Telehealth service is available statewide, accessible through internet and telephone, and consultations are available in multiple languages. Consultations are available seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. At-home COVID-19 tests or tests performed by a health care provider or at a community testing site are acceptable. The service is not for medical emergencies or for treatments other than COVID-19.
“It is important that people who test positive and are likely to get very sick from COVID-19 consider treatment as soon as possible,” said Dr. Jonathan Meiman, DHS Chief Medical Officer. “Telehealth can help get people started on oral antivirals sooner within the five-day window after symptom onset, which will help save lives.”
Learn more about COVID-19 treatments. For up-to-date information about Wisconsin’s COVID-19 response, visit the DHS COVID-19 webpage. We encourage you to follow @DHSWI on Facebook, Twitter, or dhs.wi on Instagram for more information on COVID-19.