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Help with NHS costs

Most NHS treatment is free at the point of delivery - it will never cost you money to attend a GP or hospital appointment, or receive medical treatment. However, there are still some NHS services which you do have to pay for - for example prescribed medicines, dental care and eye tests.

You may be able to claim some or all of these services for free, or to receive a discount, based on your income, employment status, age, or state of health.

You can also talk to your GP about what NHS benefits you may be entitled to.

The prescription charge in England is £9.35 (2021/22) per item, so anyone who knows they'll need to pay for at least 12 prescription items in a year will save money by getting an annual certificate. You can also get a three-month certificate for £30.25, so if you need four or more prescriptions over this period you'd be well served by buying one.

A PPC costs:

  • £30.25 for 3 months
  • £108.10 for 12 months

If you need:

  • two items each month – you can save £116.30 with a 12-month PPC
  • three items each month – you can save £228.50 with a 12-month PPC
  • four items each month – you can save £340.70 with a 12-month PPC

Price is fixed for the year - so you miss out on the usual annual prescription charge increase each April.

The digital prescription prepayment certificate (PPC) is available to buy online

Other information and advice

You can read our news article on how much you can save if you 

You can find detailed information about prescription charges, NHS costs and free entitlements on the NHS website.

Age UK offer information on your entitlement to support with NHS costs.

Last updated: 21/07/2021