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Free prescriptions for 60 year-olds and over to continue

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Free prescriptions for 60 year-olds and over to continue

The government has today announced that everyone aged 60 and over will continue to receive free prescriptions.

The Department of Health and Social Care said the decision to freeze the free prescription age was taken after a consultation. It also said free prescriptions also remain available for people “most in need.”

The factors the government considered in making its decision included the cost of living and increasing medical needs of an ageing population. Prescription charge exemptions also remain in place for people under 16 or 17 and 18 but in full-time education.

People in receipt of certain benefits also receive free prescriptions and those on low incomes who do not qualify for an automatic exemption can get help under the NHS Low Income Scheme. Those who do not qualify for an exemption or the scheme can get support for frequent prescriptions through prepayment certificates which can be paid for annually in 10 instalments, allowing people to have as many prescription items as they need for just over £2 a week.

“This government recognises the pressures with the cost of living caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. That’s why we are providing cost of living help worth £3,300 on average per household over last year and this, among the most generous help anywhere in Europe,” said the health miinister Neil O’Brien.

“It’s also why we have decided to maintain the prescription exemption age where it is. Nine out of 10 prescriptions are already free at the point of use and on top of that we also provide financial help to others on low incomes who don’t automatically get prescriptions for free.”

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