As people struggle to cope with the cost of living amid rising inflation and rising energy bills, Britons are being urged not to suffer in silence. Millions of people with certain benefits could save money on things like NHS prescriptions.
As the cost of living crisis continues to dominate the headlines, people will be looking to save money where they can.
Although medicines are essential for people who are sick or have a long-term illness, some groups of people could get prescriptions for free.
A total of 15 groups of people, including Britons who depend on Pension Credit and Universal Credit, are expected to get them for free.
Others who depend on more than one prescription per month could save money by investing in a prepaid certificate.
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Who is eligible for free NHS prescriptions?
Children under 16
Anyone aged 60 or over
People aged 16 to 18 and in full-time studies
Pregnant women or anyone who has had a baby in the past 12 months and has a valid Maternity Exemption Certificate
Those who are registered disabled
An NHS hospital patient
People on income support
Anyone receiving income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
People receiving Employment and Income Support Benefit
Applicants with pension credit guarantee credit
Some Universal Credit Applicants
Some people claim child tax credits or work tax credits
Those who receive a valid NHS certificate for full healthcare cost assistance (HC2)
Anyone living in Scotland
People living in Wales.
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People who fall into these categories should be automatically exempted and given a certificate.
However, anyone who thinks they are eligible can apply for the HC1 Low Income Scheme on the NHS website.
Meanwhile, people who are not eligible for aid could still save money by buying a prepayment certificate (PPC).
A person who relies on just one prescription a month could save an average of £40 a year on their NHS prescription costs with one of these certificates, according to research by Money Saving Expert.
This could mean that tens of thousands of seniors will have to shell out for these additional costs over the next few years.
A spokesman for the Department of Health and Social Care said that although the proposals were not popular, they were needed.
They said: ‘Around 90% of community prescriptions in England are free and people don’t pay if they are on low income, over 60 or have certain medical conditions.
“The upper age exemption has not changed since 1995 and that is why we consulted on re-linking this to the statutory retirement age.”