Prescriptions Charges and Exemptions
Extensive exemption and remission arrangements protect those likely to have difficulty in paying charges (NHS prescription and dental charges, optical and hospital travel costs).
The NHS prescription charge is a flat-rate amount which successive Governments have thought it reasonable to charge for those who can afford to pay for their medicines.Prescription prepayment certificates (PPCs) offer real savings for people who need extensive medication.
From 1 April 2023, the charges are:
- Prescription (per item): £9.65
- 12-month prepayment certificate (PPC) - £111.60 ( patients can spread the cost and pay in 10 monthly installments
- 3-month PPC: £31.25
The cost of an NHS Hormone Replacement therapy (HRT) PPC will be £19.30.
People who pay for their NHS presciptions could save with a PPC. Rather than paying £9.65 for each prescription, the 3 and 12 month PPC covers unlimited NHS prescriptions for the one-off set price. This means if people need 4 or more items in 3 months or 12 or more items in 12 months, they will save money by buyig a PPC
There is further information about prescription exemptions and fees on the NHS website
Mid-Essex CCG has asked GPs to reduce their prescribing of some medicines that are readily available to purchase because:
- Many of these products are cheap to buy and are readily available from pharmacies, where you can also get additional professional advice on your condition.
- Shops and supermarkets (which are often open until late) also have a limited range of these products that you can purchase.
- Some of them do not actually work very well, e.g. cough syrups.
- This money could be better spent on treating more serious conditions as diabetes and heart disease.
In some circumstances your doctor can still prescribe these medicines on the NHS.
GPs are asked not to prescribe the following:
- Pain killers for minor aches and pains
- Cough and cold remedies
- Lozenges, throat sprays, mouthwashes and gargles
- Hay fever preparations
- Indigestion remedies
- Travel medicines
- Treatments for non-serious constipation and diarrhoea
- Treatments for minor acne and minor nail infections
- Tonics and vitamins
- Health supplements and complementary medicines
- Threadworm tablets
- Ear wax removers and softeners
- Barrier creams for nappy rash
- Creams for female facial hair
- Creams, gels & tubigrip for sprains and sports injuries
- Creams & gels for bruising, tattoos and varicose veins
- Athlete’s foot cream and powders
- Slimming preparations except prescription only items
- Head lice lotions and shampoos
- Moisturisers & bath additives for minor dry skin conditions
- Food and toilet preparations which are not clinically indicated e.g. gluten free foods, liquid feeds, soya milks and sun creams
28 day prescribing :In line with Department of Health guidelines we do not generally issue more than 28 days’ supply of medication.
Pharmacy Prescriptions: When presenting yor prescription to a pharmacy please ensure they have all items in stock before you pay. We have become aware that some patients are having part of their prescription dispensed and then waiting for a period of days for other items. If the pharmacy cannot provide all the items together and you cannot wait for orders to be received you are advised to try a different pharmacy.