The Department of Health and Social Care have confirmed that prescription charges will not rise in 2022.
We are pleased as we know people with long term conditions are struggling to afford their vital medication, with the rising cost of living. That's why we're calling on the UK Government to review the list and scrap the charge.
Our comment was picked up by The Daily Express. Pharmacy organisations who are members of the Coalition shared examples of how damaging the charge is, as patients make tough decision about what medications they leave behind, because they simply can't afford them.
A Coalition spokesperson said:
“We welcome the decision to freeze prescription charges this year, however the English Government still lags behind their Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish counterparts in recognising that this charge is a false economy and must be scrapped entirely.
“Despite the freeze, the cost of living continues to spiral, so pharmacists are seeing an increase in the number of people asking which items they could leave behind and live without, simply because they can not afford them.
“It’s entirely unfair that the UK Government is putting this unnecessary pressure on pharmacists to have to provide counsel on which of these vital medications should be prioritised by the patient. That is not their job and it’s seldom a simple answer.
“When people miss or delay taking essential medication, their condition deteriorates and they are more likely to rely on NHS services more, or even end up in hospital.
“These are entirely avoidable admissions which cost the NHS millions, and can have damaging consequences for the patient.
“We have recently seen that the UK Government is willing to make changes to how HRT is charged, but now it's time to make healthcare equitable for all.”
Here you'll find information about the Prescription Charges Coalition's latest activities