The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) now offers free telehealth visits statewide for those at increased risk for severe COVID-19 illness.
This provides easier access to potentially life-saving treatment, according to a release from the OHA.
Through this program, any person in Oregon, regardless of health insurance status, can make a no-cost telehealth appointment with a clinician. During the appointment, they can find out if they are eligible for COVID-19 oral antiviral medicine.
OHA partnered with Color Health to launch the new program Monday, Nov. 14.
People at increased risk of severe COVID-19 illness whose symptoms started in the prior five days are eligible for treatment. If a clinician confirms the patient is eligible for treatment, the clinician can prescribe the medication.
“These medicines can help prevent severe COVID-19 illness, hospitalization and even death,” said Andrea Lara, M.D., M.P.H., therapeutics clinical and equity lead with Oregon Health Authority. “They should be available for free for anyone who needs them, whether or not the person has health insurance.”
She added that the service will especially benefit communities hit hardest by COVID-19. This includes Tribal nations and communities of color.
OHA recommends people with COVID-19 symptoms or a positive COVID test first call or visit a health care provider. If they don’t have a provider or are unable to quickly get an appointment, they can find a federal Test to Treat site.
If there is no Test to Treat site nearby or they can’t get to one, they can make a telehealth appointment through Color. The process is as follows:
Visit Color.com/COVID-19-treatment-OR and take the survey, or call 833-273-6330 and describe your symptoms.
Join the video or phone call.
Those given a prescription can pick it up at their local pharmacy or get home delivery.
Telehealth visit hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week. Consultation is offered in 17 languages. You can visit OHA’s COVID-19 treatments page, or call Color at 833-273-6330 for more information.
For people who can’t use the service or who need additional assistance or accessibility accommodations, there is another option. They can find participating federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) on the Test to Treat site. They should look for sites that say “HRSA supported health center” or read OHA’s monthly COVID-19 Therapeutics Newsletter, found on OHA’s COVID-19 Treatments page, for a list.