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NPA chair: Prescription charge rise is ‘shameful neglect of working people’

NHS & health news

NPA chair: Prescription charge rise is ‘shameful neglect of working people’

The National Pharmacy Association chair Nick Kaye has become the latest leading figure in the pharmacy sector to criticise the government over its decision to increase the prescription charge.

Kaye (pictured) said the hike in charge from £9.65 per item to £9.90 from May 1 was “shameful neglect of working people on low fixed incomes who are not exempt.”

“Many people already choose not to collect some or all their prescription medicines because of cost, with potentially dire health consequences,” he said.

“As pharmacists, we understand the healing power of medicines. So naturally we oppose arbitrary barriers to people getting the medicines they need.

“This is a tax on the working poor that deepens the cost of living crisis for them. As pharmacists, we are health care professionals and have no interest in being tax collectors.”

The NPA said its survey revealed the most commonly reported medicines not taken because of the prescription charge were antibiotics, painkillers, asthma inhalers, blood pressure medication and antidepressants.

Community Pharmacy England chief executive Janet Morrison and England Pharmacy Board chair Tase Oputu have also criticised the increase in recent days.

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NHS & health news