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For more information about welfare benefits, call our helpline on 03000 030 555.

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Welfare benefits

Help with prescription costs

NHS prescription charges have been abolished in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. From April 2017, in England, the cost for each prescription is £8.60.

In England if you are under 16, or under 19 and in full time education, or over 60, you are automatically entitled to free prescriptions.

You may also get free prescriptions if you have a medical exemption certificate because you:

  • are pregnant or have had a baby in the last 12 months
  • are a war pensioner being treated for your accepted disability
  • are being treated for TB, cancer, the effects of cancer or the effects of cancer treatment
  • have a specified physical disability that prevents you leaving home without the help of another person

If you have a low income and your capital is £16,000 or less you may qualify for the Low Income Scheme. This capital rises to £23,250 if you are in a care home.

Prescription prepayment certificate

You can save money by buying a prescription prepayment certificate (PPC) if:

  • you need 4 or more items in 3 months – the certificate costs £29.10
    or
  • you need 12 or more items in a year – the certificate costs £104

You can apply online or call the order line on 0300 300 1341.

Next: Help with heating costs >

Download our welfare benefits information (PDF, 284KB)

Last medically reviewed: December 2017. Due for review: December 2018

This information uses the best available medical evidence and was produced with the support of people living with lung conditions. Find out how we produce our information. If you’d like to see our references get in touch.