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Pharmacies to digitally check if patients get free prescriptions - MSE News

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Health & Beauty MoneySaving
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MSE_CallumMSE_Callum Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Health & Beauty MoneySaving
Some pharmacies will check whether patients are exempt from paying for a prescription before their medication is dispensed, under a new pilot to be trialled next year...
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'Pharmacies to digitally check if patients get free prescriptions'
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  • dori2odori2o Forumite
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    Good.

    The scheme is essential to ensure those on low incomes are able to continue to maintain their health or manage long term health issues.

    Without the scheme costs to the NHS would significantly increase as rather than managing a condition the NHS would end up spending more treating someone in a bed in hospital or providing end of life care.

    It was especially valuable to me after I was made redundant 15 years ago and took a 50% cut in pay by taking the first job offer to ensure I didn't have to claim JSA, especially as I have 6 items every 28 days.

    Since losing eligibility sime years ago I now have a pre-paid card, which I personally feel the cost of which is extremely cheap considering you can have as many items as you need for just £10.40 per month (paid for over 10 months if the year via direct debit).

    I would actually be happy to pay a little more for it, especially as the cost hasn't changed for many yesrs, and the cost of a single prescribed item without the card is £8.80.

    It saves me a significant amount of money every month.

    I'm surprised more checks are not already done with BOTH schemes.

    I have my pre-paid card with me all the time, and it was the same with the exemption card, but I never ever get asked to provide them.

    Now as I use the same chemist/pharmacy all the time then that might not be surprising, but even if I do use a different one for any reason I still never get asked to provide it.

    I know people who tick boxes E or F on the back of the prescription everytime they go in and nothing is done to check.

    I know that back at NHS HQ they do audit some cases, but very few compared to the numbers who are fraudulently checking the boxes to receive free medications.

    It's about time that this scheme, and in fact the whole process of dispensing joined the 21st Century in terms of IT/Digital technology.
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  • PrinzessileinPrinzessilein Forumite
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    I am entitled to fee prescriptions.

    Whether at the dentist, the chemist or the optician there are very few checks made if any...last visit to the dentist I was simply asked if the details were the same as 6 months ago, and sign-here-please...similarly the chemist simply takes my word for it when I tick the box on the prescription and sign....the optician DID take more time with a form to be filled and signed in a few places.

    I see no problem with chemists checking that I am still exempt.
  • minty777minty777 Forumite
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    Why do prescription charges not apply to Scotland,Wales,and Northern Ireland?
    o:)
  • AmesAmes Forumite
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    Good. Hopefully it will reduce the number of threads we get where people have been fined after being wrongly advised that they don't have to pay.
    Unless I say otherwise 'you' means the general you not you specifically.
  • badmemorybadmemory Forumite
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    Most pharmacies nowadays, once you've been to them have you on record & what your exemption, if any, is. The problem is with people getting new treatment & with a change of circumstances. I have had mine free for a lot of years but now get them free because of my age. But when I got my son's first presciption filled when he was over 30 I asked for advice at the chemists. Big mistake. Told it was free because of JSA - not true, only for income based. Got home thinking it must be me who is wrong, after all they are doing this every day. Went back next day and paid. That's another chemists I won't use - so far only 2 down. If you can't trust your doctor & chemist to get things right then who can you trust!
  • gettingtheresometimegettingtheresometime Forumite
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    minty777 wrote: »
    Why do prescription charges not apply to Scotland,Wales,and Northern Ireland?


    Because Health has been devolved to the relevant bodies.
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  • edited 16 October 2018 at 12:28PM
    pmdukpmduk Forumite
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    edited 16 October 2018 at 12:28PM
    Ames wrote: »
    Good. Hopefully it will reduce the number of threads we get where people have been fined after being wrongly advised that they don't have to pay.

    Unfortunately, it doesn't begin to address those cases where people are fined for dental treatment where surgery staff have wrongly assumed the mantle of benefits advisors.
    badmemory wrote: »
    If you can't trust your doctor & chemist to get things right then who can you trust!

    They're qualified in medicine and pharmaceuticals respectively. They have no more training than the average person in benefits entitlements and probably less personal experience in them actually.
  • phrynephryne Forumite
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    Not sure how that's going to work with me and OH. We're both living on his (means tested) welfare payments and are both entitled to free prescriptions, but only his name is on the claim letters, even though the claim is for both of us. The number of times I've tried explaining this to the chemist when I go to get a prescription for myself..
  • pmdukpmduk Forumite
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    phryne wrote: »
    Not sure how that's going to work with me and OH. We're both living on his (means tested) welfare payments and are both entitled to free prescriptions, but only his name is on the claim letters, even though the claim is for both of us. The number of times I've tried explaining this to the chemist when I go to get a prescription for myself..

    Get yourself an HC2, your name will be on it. Whilst there's no actual need to do so it'll avoid any future explanations.
  • I'm in same boat with my hubby and often get told to get lost by the chemist staff, when I am legally entitled!
    I've tried getting an exemption but no they won't provide it and DWP keep telling me I am entitled and no proof is needed it's right at their end.
    I'm also entitled due to child tax credit and ticked that box once as that applies to me also, yet got a £100 fine for ticking the wrong box even though I can tick either as both are relevant to me getting free prescriptions!
    They waved the fine but said I MUST tick the box for my hubby's claim regardless of what the chemist says.
    If only they would put income based couple claims in both names!!
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