Pharmacists have urged people to be patient amid a scarcity of rapid antigen tests.
Pharmacies are being inundated with inquiries as people try to track down the at-home testing kits.
The shortage of COVID-19 rapid antigen tests coincides with rising coronavirus cases and lengthy queues at PCR testing centres.
Plunkett's TerryWhite Chemmart Port Macquarie pharmacist James Yoo said they received hundreds of phone calls a day about rapid antigen tests.
"It is a supply and demand issue," he said.
"We are placing orders with the wholesalers every single day and we have looked at alternate suppliers as well.
"Whether we get the orders, that's the biggest question mark, and when we do get them in, we sell out within half an hour to one hour."
Mr Yoo urged people to exercise patience during the rapid antigen test shortage.
Pharmacist at Flynns Beach Pharmacy Sophie Rourke also encouraged people seeking rapid antigen test kits to be patient and only use the at-home tests when necessary.
The pharmacy has rapid antigen tests on back order.
"Our hands are tied," she said.
"There are only a certain number of suppliers and we can't compete with the bigger companies making deals."
Rapid antigen tests are an additional tool in the fight against COVID-19.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said 160 million rapid antigen tests were on the way to Australia.
"In addition to that, I want to stress once again that those who are required to have a test, be it a rapid antigen test or a PCR test, those tests are free," he said.
"Essential tests - so if you're a close contact, if you're symptomatic, those tests are free to all Australians."
There is a growing community call to make rapid antigen tests free for everyone but Mr Morrison ruled that out.
National Cabinet has agreed to give a maximum of 10 free rapid antigen tests over three months to concession card holders.
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