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Home E News E Changes to COVID-19 treatment services from 27 June 2023

Changes to COVID-19 treatment services from 27 June 2023

COVID-19 treatment services will transfer to integrated care boards (ICB) on 27 June 2023. From this date, ICBs will have statutory responsibility for providing access to community-based COVID treatments

Since December 2021, new COVID-19 treatments, such as antivirals and neutralising Monoclonal Antibodies (nMAbs), have been offered through a nationally commissioned service to people who are at the highest risk of becoming seriously ill and test positive in the community. This service was set up under interim arrangements as a response to the pandemic and currently uses a common care pathway that applies nationally.

Now that the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has given its final recommendations on some of the COVID-19 treatments that should be offered by the NHS, these treatments will be funded and arranged as part of routine NHS services.

From 27 June 2023, residents in Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Haringey and Islington who test positive for COVID-19 and have a health condition that means they are eligible for COVID treatments, will need to contact the new North Central London (NCL) COVID-19 Medicines Service to be assessed for treatment.

Patients can access this General Practice-led service by either:

  • contacting their GP practice,
  • calling NHS 111, or
  • calling the NCL COVID-19 Medicines Service directly on 020 3838 7121 (available 10am to 1.30pm Monday to Friday and 10am to 12noon Saturday and Sunday).
    Patients can also contact the service via email at (This mailbox is monitored 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday and 9am to 2pm Saturday and Sunday).

Hospital specialists may also advise patients to contact the service if they have tested positive for COVID-19.

The service is available for all high-risk people, including children over 12, who are eligible for COVID treatments and registered with a GP in the north central London boroughs of Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Haringey and Islington.

Others, such as visitors to our boroughs, those residing in north central London but not registered with a local GP and those without housing or in emergency accommodation will also be eligible for accessing this service.

There will be an assessment carried out by a clinician who will advise whether COVID treatments, if any, are suitable.

It is important to note that after 27 June, those at highest risk will no longer be automatically contacted by the NHS about treatments after reporting a positive COVID-19 test result. Instead, eligible people should contact the NCL COVID Medicines Service as soon as possible after testing positive so that they can be assessed for COVID treatments.

As part of the new service, antiviral oral medication can be collected from a designated pharmacy or, under certain circumstances, delivered to the patient’s home. If a neutralising Monoclonal Antibody (nMAb) medication is needed to be prescribed as oral medication is contraindicated, this treatment will continue to be available by intravenous infusion at UCLH hospital as before. For patients unable to make their own travel arrangements to UCLH, patient transport can be arranged. For patients unable to travel, arrangements will be made for the treatment to be administered at their place of residence by a healthcare professional.

NHS England has sent out a letter to all of those previously identified as potentially eligible for COVID-19 treatment advising them of the changes to national arrangements for accessing COVID treatment services from the end of June 2023.