NHS - Get help with prescription costs

Published 12 Nov 2019 • Updated 18 Nov 2019 • By Josephine O'Brien

Have you heard of prescription aides from the NHS? They may be able to help you to save money on your prescription costs.

NHS - Get help with prescription costs
Prescription prepayment certificates (PPC) are available in England and they can save you money.

NHS prescription costs
The current prescription charge is £9.00 per item (as of April 2019).
A three monthly PPC is £29.10 and could save you money if you need more than three prescribed items in three months.  
A 12-month certificate is £104.00 and could save you money if you need more than 12 prescribed items in a year.
PPCs are available by 10 monthly direct debit instalment payments. The prescription prepayment certificates allow anyone to obtain all the prescriptions they need for £2 per week. 
If you need to access the services below then medicines are free:
* Medicines administered at a hospital or an NHS walk-in centre.
* Prescribed contraceptives.
* Medicines personally administered by a GP.
* Medicines supplied at a hospital or Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) clinic for the treatment of a sexually transmitted infection or tuberculosis. 

Who is entitled to free prescriptions?

You can get free NHS prescriptions if, at the time the prescription is dispensed, you:
* are 60 or over
* are under 16
* are 16-18 and in full-time education
* are pregnant or have had a baby in the previous 12 months and have a valid maternity exemption certificate (MatEx)  
* have a specified medical condition and have a valid medical exemption certificate (MedEx)
* have a continuing physical disability that prevents you from going out without help from another person and have a valid MedEx
* hold a valid war pension exemption certificate and the prescription is for your accepted disability
* are an NHS inpatient

You are also entitled to free prescriptions if you or your partner – including civil partner – receive, or you're under the age of 20 and the dependant of someone receiving:
* Income Support
* Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
* Income-related Employment and Support Allowance, or  
* Pension Credit Guarantee Credit 
* Universal Credit and meet the criteria 

If you're entitled to or named on:
* a valid NHS tax credit exemption certificate – if you don't have a certificate, you can show your award notice; you qualify if you get Child Tax Credits, Working Tax * Credits with a disability element (or both) and have income for tax credit purposes of £15,276 or less
* a valid NHS certificate for full help with health costs (HC2)
* People named on an NHS certificate for partial help with health costs (HC3) may also get help.

For more info keep reading on the NHS site :)



Initially published on March 24th, 2016. Update on November 12th, 2019.

avatar Josephine O'Brien

Author: Josephine O'Brien, Community Manager UK

Josephine is the Community Manager of the UK with a Master’s in Publishing. She is a strong believer in the power of words and strives to make Carenity UK a comforting, vibrant and informative community for both... >> Learn more


on 03/07/2016

This is helpful information GildaT...A lot of people don't now they are entitled to free prescriptions...I am so lucky i live in Scotland as we get free prescriptions otherwise i would struggle to pay for it..Thanks for posting.

Unregistered member
on 28/11/2016

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Hemorrhoids: Dilated (enlarged) veins in the walls of the anus and sometimes around the rectum, usually caused by untreated constipation but occasionally associated with chronic . Diarrhea Symptoms start with bleeding after defecation. If untreated, hemorrhoids can worsen, protruding from the anus. Treatment involves changing the diet to prevent constipation and avoid further irritation, the use of topical medication, and sometimes surgery.Pharmascience very good work on piles problem.

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on 13/11/2019

I have already got free prescriptions since I was a baby.  I have an underactive thyroid. Thank you anyway.

on 13/11/2019

I already receive free prescriptions as I’m over 65 and retired, thank you.

on 13/11/2019

yes I have free prescriptions as I am retired and over 65 ,thank you 

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