Huge change for those on Universal Credit eligible for free NHS prescriptions

THE NHS is making a big change to the way in which Universal Credit recipients can get free prescriptions.
Those on Universal Credit earning £435 or less per month or £935 or less with children, qualify for free prescriptions.

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The NHS Business Authority is changing the way people on Universal Credit qualify for free prescriptions

However, at the moment, not all prescription forms have a tick box for Universal Credit.
Instead, the box on some forms only asks if patients are getting income-related jobseeker’s allowance, which can cause confusion among those who claim Universal Credit.
Even if you do claim Universal Credit, you still need to tick the box “K” for income-based jobseeker’s allowance to qualify for free prescriptions.
However, the DWP and NHS Business Authority have confirmed that this box will now be replaced by a Universal Credit tick box illustrated by the letter “U”.

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So, if you’re entitled to free NHS prescriptions because you claim Universal Credit and your take-home pay is under the limit, you’ll need to tick the box “U” on the new prescription forms.
If you paid for a previous prescription you were entitled to for free because of the confusion caused by the old forms, you can request a refund.
How do I request a refund on NHS prescription charges?
If you paid for a prescription before finding out you were entitled to it, you might be able to claim a refund.
Refunds must be claimed within 3 months of the date you made payment.

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To claim a prescription refund, you must ask your pharmacist for a “FP57” refund receipt when you pay, you cannot get one later.

Take your FP57 receipt and proof you were entitled when the prescription was collected to any pharmacy.
The pharmacy will issue your refund directly.

Are prescription charges rising in April?

PRESCRIPTION charges usually rise every April in England and the Department of Health and Social Care sets the exact amount they rise by.

They rose from £9.35 to £9.65 per item in England last April.
But the government hasn’t yet confirmed if prescription charges will rise in England this April – but it usually does after it’s delivered its Spring Budget.
Prescriptions remain free of charge in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
There are ways to save money on prescriptions, and in some cases get them for free.

What is a prescription prepayment certificate?
How can I cut my prescription costs?
There are ways to save money on prescriptions and, in some cases, get them for free.
f you live in England, you can get free prescriptions if you’re in one of the following groups:

You’re aged 60 or over
You’re aged under 16 or are 17 or 18 and in full-time education
You’re pregnant or had a baby in the previous 12 months and h …
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