Popular drugs Australians have been urged to use if they contract Covid have been completely cleared off shelves, as panic buying continues.
Painkillers such as Panadol and Nurofen have been completely cleared off Australian shelves as panic buying reaches new heights.
Panicked shoppers took to social media this week claiming paracetamol and ibuprofen had all but been cleared out, sharing photos of near empty shelves across multiple supermarkets and pharmacies.
It comes after deputy chief health officer Professor Michael Kidd urged Australians to stock up on over-the-counter painkillers, as cases skyrocketed into the tens of thousands each day.
Professor Kidd said having the medication on hand would help to manage fevers and mild aches or pains.
“The first thing to do is to be prepared,” he said.
“My advice is that you make sure you have some paracetamol or ibuprofen at home in case you’re diagnosed with Covid-19.
“Paracetamol or ibuprofen can be used to manage fever and aches and pains.
“It’s important to be prepared because you won’t be able to go to your supermarket or pharmacy if you are diagnosed with Covid-19.”
The warning caused a wave of panic buying of the products, with many people reporting empty shelves in the supermarkets and pharmacies.
On Tuesday, Twitter users posted dozens of photos of empty shelves to the social media network.
“No Panadol on the shelves at my local Woolworths yesterday – stripped bare,” one person posted on Twitter.
“Use Panadol they say. There’s no Panadol to buy at Coles, at Woolworths, at the 4 local chemists or at Aldi. There is no Nurofen either,” another person said.
“So the local Woolworths was saying they had Rapid Antigen Tests. Husband went down. Nope no RATs. All gone. Also no Panadol, Nurofen or any other painkillers. Well done Greg Hunt. This is how you create that hoarding sh** you were talking about,” added a third.
Another person said they had searched for Panadol on the Woolworths online site and the item was unavailable.
The issue has affected not just the painkiller aisles, but has spanned to fresh food and other household items.
Professor Kidd said many Australians would test positive in the coming days and weeks as case numbers continued to surge.
“With the rising case numbers we’ve seen over the past week in many parts of the country, it’s likely that many of us will test positive for Covid-19 over the coming days and weeks if we haven’t already done so,” he said.
He said many people would have no symptoms at all, while others would have mild symptoms.
“You‘ll need to drink plenty of fluids which can be water, but you may also benefit from using electrolyte powder or solution,” he said.