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Patients going without prescriptions in inflation crisis, warns NPA


Patients going without prescriptions in inflation crisis, warns NPA

More patients in England are choosing not to collect their prescriptions because they cannot pay the Government’s £9.35 levy, the National Pharmacy Association has warned.

Sixty-eight per cent of respondents to a June NPA survey said patients are going without medicines more frequently during the cost of living crisis, with almost 90 per cent saying they see this some of the time.

Three-quarters say this happens one to five times a week, while 15 per cent say it happens six to 20 times a week.

Antibiotics, painkillers, asthma inhalers, blood pressure medication and antidepressants are some of the drugs most commonly not taken because of concerns about paying the prescription charge, the NPA survey indicated.

Pharmacy bodies including the NPA, PSNC and Royal Pharmaceutical Society have long campaigned for the prescription charge to be dropped in England. Patients in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are not required to pay for their prescriptions.

NPA vice chair Nick Kaye said: “People should not be denied access to prescription medicines on the basis of their ability to pay. 

“For pharmacists, processing prescription charges is a task which adds workload but has no patient benefit. 

“We would like to see the prescription levy reformed or scrapped altogether, to remove this barrier to treatment.”

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