Prescriptions Charges and Exemptions
Extensive exemption and remission arrangements protect those likely to have difficulty in paying charges (NHS prescription and dental charges, optical and hospital travel costs).
The NHS prescription charge is a flat-rate amount which successive Governments have thought it reasonable to charge for those who can afford to pay for their medicines. Prescription prepayment certificates (PPCs) offer real savings for people who need extensive medication.
These charges apply in England only. In Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales prescriptions are free of charge.
Prescription prepayment certificates (PPC) are available in England and they can save you money.
Prescription costs as of April 1 2020
- The current prescription charge is £9.15 (£17.20 per pair of elastic hosiery).
- A three monthly PPC is £29.65. This saves you money if you need four or more items in three months.
- A 12 month certificate is £105.90 and saves money if 13 or more items are needed in 12 months.
Wigs and fabric supports
- Surgical bra: £30.05
- Abdominal or spinal support: £45.35
- Stock modacrylic wig: £74.15
- Partial human hair wig: £196.40
- Full bespoke human hair wig: £287.20
PPCs are available by 10 monthly direct debit instalment payments. The prescription prepayment certificates allow anyone to obtain all the prescriptions they need for £2 per week.
Find out more about the prescription prepayment certificate.
If you need to access the services below then medicines are free:
- Prescribed contraceptives.
- Medicines personally administered by a GP.
- Medicines supplied at a hospital or Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) clinic for the treatment of a sexually transmitted infection or tuberculosis.
- 12-month prepayment certificate (PPC): £105.90
- 3-month PPC: £29.65
If you will have to pay for four or more prescription items in three months, or more than 15 items in 12 months, you may find it cheaper to buy a PPC.
There is further information about prescription exemptions and fees on the NHS website