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Free Medicines from your Pharmacy with 'Pharmacy First Card'/NHS Minor Ailment Scheme (Under 16's, over 60's and free prescription adults)
Free Medicines from your Pharmacy with 'Pharmacy First Card'/NHS Minor Ailment Scheme (Under 16's, over 60's and free prescription adults)

Free Medicines from your Pharmacy with 'Pharmacy First Card'/NHS Minor Ailment Scheme (Under 16's, over 60's and free prescription adults)

Lots of people may already know about this but I'm certain many don't as it's not exactly widely publicised. I've included a link to the Boots Website, however you need to request this from your GP.

Basically if you don't pay for prescriptions (Under 16's do not) then you can request a 'PHARMACY FIRST CARD' from your GP receptionist.

This card entitles you to many free medicines without having to visit your doctor and obtain a prescription including; Liquid Paracetamol (calpol) and Sudocrem. Just take your card along to the pharmacy, explain the symptoms and the pharmacist will give you something to suit e.g. nappy rash, teething etc. There is no charge for this!

If you have young children like me then I'm sure you get through loads of Sudocrem and calpol and this has been a real help to me. I'll admit I've not used it for much else but there's a long list of ailments it's suitable for below.

Here's the official spiel;

Help for common illnesses

If you want help dealing with a common illness such as a cold, cough or diarrhoea, you may be able to use the free NHS Minor Ailment Scheme at selected pharmacies, including some Boots pharmacies. Our pharmacist will be able to offer advice and may be able to offer you medicines for a minor illness without you having to book an appointment to see your GP.

Who is the service for?

Schemes vary between locations, but the NHS Minor Ailment Scheme is for adults and children who:

Are registered with a GP surgery which is taking part in the scheme

Want treatment for a minor illness included in your local scheme

Medicines can be supplied free of charge to the customer if they are exempt from NHS prescription charges.

The NHS Minor Ailment Scheme is available in Scotland and Northern Ireland, but only in selected pharmacies across England and Wales. Ask your local Boots pharmacy whether they offer the scheme and they'll check if you're eligible to receive it.

How it works

1.) Talk to a pharmacist about your illness and they will offer advice

2.) If a medicine is needed, the pharmacist will check your eligibility and whether the illness is covered by the scheme

3.) A suitable medicine may be offered to you*

*Charges will apply if you normally pay for your prescriptions. If you're exempt, for example people under 16 or over 60, then you won't pay for the medicine as this service is funded by the NHS.

What minor illnesses are covered?

Illnesses supported within the scheme may differ between locations. Some illnesses covered include:

Back-ache, sprains and strains

Colds

Conjunctivitis

Constipation

Coughs

Diarrhoea

Earache

Haemorrhoids

Hay fever

Head lice

Headache and fever

Heartburn and indigestion

Insect bites and stings

Mild eczema and dermatitis

Minor fungal skin infections

Mouth ulcers

Nappy rash

Sore throat

Teething

Threadworm

Thrush

Benefits

Convenient: No need to make an appointment

Advice: Pharmacist can refer you to a GP if necessary

Flexible: Many pharmacies are open at the weekend

Read more at boots.com/pre…nts

this is not only at Boots lots of other chemists do this.

Also worth a read of this thread

hotukdeals.com/tag/dea…766
- eslick

27 Comments

thanks for this, I had not heard about this but will see if I'm eligible.

I genuinely thought this was going to say under 16's get free prescriptions!

Thank you for this!

why would u get sudocream from the doctors it's it's available without prescriptions this is draining the NHS.

Whilst the minor illness scheme is great, all the ailments listed treatments can be purchased over the counter cheap eg, headache tablets cost 18p, a prescription cost the NHS a lot more. If you are on a very low income use it, otherwise lets not put the NHS under more pressure!!

Original Poster

nikkivau

Whilst the minor illness scheme is great, all the ailments listed … Whilst the minor illness scheme is great, all the ailments listed treatments can be purchased over the counter cheap eg, headache tablets cost 18p, a prescription cost the NHS a lot more. If you are on a very low income use it, otherwise lets not put the NHS under more pressure!!



​I'm on maternity leave with two young babies, sorry for putting the NHS under more strain as you put it but I've always worked and always paid for my prescriptions. This has been a huge help to me and I will be using it. it won't be long before its all privatised anyway.

buy your own Calpol, it probably costs 5x what it should to the NHS, thats how drug companies work, they screw the NHS on prices.

Seriously!
Why should the NHS pick up the bill for peoples minor ailments?
I'm disabled with a long term health condition and I wouldn't even consider taking advantage of this scheme.
People need to start taking a little personal responsibility for themselves.
Unless you are in a dire financial situation taking advantage of this scheme is simply milking an already over-stretched, under funded NHS.

I think some are missing the point here. This is to save the NHS money by not having to visit a GP first to get a free prescription item that the person is already entitled to. It costs the NHS around £45 for a 10 minute GP consultation. So going to pharmacy direct and getting your free item saves £45 cost to the NHS. I agree that some items are cheap to buy from supermarket etc but still a major cost saver over seeing the GP first to be prescribed the item on a free prescription.

I suppose on the bright side it frees up doctors to see patients that need an appointment.

ShootistUK

I think some are missing the point here. This is to save the NHS money by … I think some are missing the point here. This is to save the NHS money by not having to visit a GP first to get a free prescription item that the person is already entitled to. It costs the NHS around £45 for a 10 minute GP consultation. So going to pharmacy direct and getting your free item saves £45 cost to the NHS. I agree that some items are cheap to buy from supermarket etc but still a major cost saver over seeing the GP first to be prescribed the item on a free prescription.


It's not missing the point though.... people shouldn't be making GP appointments for minor aliments in the first place.
Pharmacists have always been there; to give help and advice regarding minor ailments.
Seriously, its just a little common sense....
The NHS shouldnt have to be picking up the tab for things such as headaches, runny noses and bee stings

This is not commonly found in most pharmacies though. It's specific areas decided by government and there's an eligibility criteria also. Just a heads up before everyone rushes to get sudocream for free!

ShootistUK

I think some are missing the point here. This is to save the NHS money by … I think some are missing the point here. This is to save the NHS money by not having to visit a GP first to get a free prescription item that the person is already entitled to. It costs the NHS around £45 for a 10 minute GP consultation. So going to pharmacy direct and getting your free item saves £45 cost to the NHS. I agree that some items are cheap to buy from supermarket etc but still a major cost saver over seeing the GP first to be prescribed the item on a free prescription.



You don't need a GP appt/prescription for a normal; headache, insect bite or nappy rash!!
Edited by: "nikkivau" 11th Mar

PrincessJellybean

It's not missing the point though.... people shouldn't be making GP … It's not missing the point though.... people shouldn't be making GP appointments for minor aliments in the first place.Pharmacists have always been there; to give help and advice regarding minor ailments.Seriously, its just a little common sense.... The NHS shouldnt have to be picking up the tab for things such as headaches, runny noses and bee stings


All very fine in theory, and if you have some spare cash, but that's not the position with everyone. And if some people choose to use the NHS (and its free prescriptions) for something you and I might just deal with ourselves isn't it better that they should just go to Boots rather than wasting GP time?

Just to bear inmind example Calpol costs around £2 to buy over the counter but on free prescriptions actualy costs NHS over £10 for the same Calpol as chemist's commision and other costs are charged to NHS . So may be we can think of saving money for NHS by paying little amount so more funds are left for serious illneses.

Newbold

All very fine in theory, and if you have some spare cash, but that's not … All very fine in theory, and if you have some spare cash, but that's not the position with everyone. And if some people choose to use the NHS (and its free prescriptions) for something you and I might just deal with ourselves isn't it better that they should just go to Boots rather than wasting GP time?


My previous comment said that i believe the scheme should be there for people who are in a dire financial situation.
Those in absolute need should always have access to any healthcare they need.
However, a vast number of people who would be eligible for this scheme will be able to afford to buy the medications themselves over the counter.
Just because a scheme is available to you, it doesn't mean you have to use it.
So many people's lives are impacted by the lack of funding in the NHS it just seems slightly ridiculous that this scheme is being posted in a 'freebies' section on a consumer website.
The over the counter medications spoken about here are not free, the NHS is paying for them.
Sometimes you have to look at the bigger picture, and realise the decisions we make have wider implications for society.
I know some wont agree....... I'm just voicing my opinion, but I just want the NHS to survive, and funding to be directed to those who have real health needs, rather than those who sneeze during pollen season or have a patch of dry skin.

Edited by: "PrincessJellybean" 12th Mar

It's a scheme designed to save the NHS money, and help catch more serious ailments that might go undiagnosed because people don't want to waste the GPs time.
It's only for those exempt from paying so whether they get the medicines from the pharmacy or the GP it would still be free...although remember the NHS is only free at source we almost all pay taxes that fund the NHS.
If you suffer from certain conditions you are exempt from all prescription charges, whether they pertain to your main ailment or not.
I expect there are many who disagree with that policy, especially if they aren't eligible.
If this scheme didn't save GP time and money I pretty sure it would be scrapped.


PrincessJellybean

My previous comment said that i believe the scheme should be there for … My previous comment said that i believe the scheme should be there for people who are in a dire financial situation.Those in absolute need should always have access to any healthcare they need.However, a vast number of people who would be eligible for this scheme will be able to afford to buy the medications themselves over the counter. Just because a scheme is available to you, it doesn't mean you have to use it. So many people's lives are impacted by the lack of funding in the NHS it just seems slightly ridiculous that this scheme is being posted in a 'freebies' section on a consumer website. The over the counter medications spoken about here are not free, the NHS is paying for them.Sometimes you have to look at the bigger picture, and realise the decisions we make have wider implications for society.I know some wont agree....... I'm just voicing my opinion, but I just want the NHS to survive, and funding to be directed to those who have real health needs, rather than those who sneeze during pollen season or have a patch of dry skin.


I agree with you essentially - but the better-off people who will 'abuse' this scheme would do so whether or not it existed. The only difference is that they're not wasting GP time as well.

I also share your concerns for the health of the NHS - though the main cause of the problems is government underfunding. One of, if not the, most cost-effective in the world but also very poorly funded for its current needs. Aggressive international tax avoidance by companies like Boots which profit from the NHS but do everything they can to avoid contributing towards it don't help, either.

A similiar scheme was tried out in Northern Ireland a couple of years ago. It lasted about two to three months, the public flogged it to death!!

do all people over 60 get free prescriptions then?

durhamdurham2017

do all people over 60 get free prescriptions then?


Who is entitled to get free prescriptions in England?
If you are aged 60 or over.
If you are aged under 16.
If you are aged 16, 17 or 18 and in full-time education.
If you are pregnant, or have had a baby in the previous 12 months, and have a medical exemption certificate (see below).
If you have a listed medical condition and have a medical exemption certificate (see below).
If you are an NHS inpatient.
If you (or your partner) get one of the following:
Universal Credit.
Income Support.
Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance.
Income-related Employment and Support Allowance.
Pension Credit Guarantee Credit.
If you are entitled to, or named on, a valid NHS tax credit exemption certificate.
Some war pensioners - if treatment is connected with the pensionable disability.
People on a low income who have a certificate HC2 (see below).
If you get Working Tax Credit or Child Tax Credit, you (and your family) may be entitled to help with NHS health costs.

Haliviel

It's a scheme designed to save the NHS money, and help catch more serious … It's a scheme designed to save the NHS money, and help catch more serious ailments that might go undiagnosed because people don't want to waste the GPs time.It's only for those exempt from paying so whether they get the medicines from the pharmacy or the GP it would still be free...although remember the NHS is only free at source we almost all pay taxes that fund the NHS.If you suffer from certain conditions you are exempt from all prescription charges, whether they pertain to your main ailment or not.I expect there are many who disagree with that policy, especially if they aren't eligible.If this scheme didn't save GP time and money I pretty sure it would be scrapped.




no its not about catching serious issues, its to save the queues at the GPs for minor things, the reality is though that if you can afford something for a few quid you really should as our NHS cannot afford this sort of scheme. When there are queues of 8 hours or more at A&E people need to take some responsibility and allow funds to be spent more effectively, one by paying for the medicines, two not clogging up GP and A&E on things you can diagnose yourself. Thats the only good thing about this, might make someone not take an appointment at a GP or A&E.

CAZ8311

​I'm on maternity leave with two young babies, sorry for putting the NHS u … ​I'm on maternity leave with two young babies, sorry for putting the NHS under more strain as you put it but I've always worked and always paid for my prescriptions. This has been a huge help to me and I will be using it. it won't be long before its all privatised anyway.



I seriously hope you're wrong for everyone's sake. Don't you think we should be responsible and support the NHS though, rather than digging it's grave?

As already mentioned most of these medicines can be bought over the counter very cheaply, but if you ask for them "free" through the NHS, the pharmacist fills in paperwork entitling the to charge ridiculous prices from our NHS. Yes, the scheme is there to save everyone time, including our hard pressed GPs.

Whether or not you have contributed and feel "entitled" you will still lose the NHS along with everyone else if you save pennies at the cost of pounds to our health service. The service is needed, for example, for your ante/post natal care and the safe delivery of your two children. If you have children your contributions have already been justified!

Pensioner (and retired SRN here) and when I left hospital recently I refused my prescription for my "over the counter" take home drugs because I love our free health service.

Haliviel

It's a scheme designed to save the NHS money, and help catch more … It's a scheme designed to save the NHS money, and help catch more serious ailments that might go undiagnosed because people don't want to waste the GPs time.It's only for those exempt from paying so whether they get the medicines from the pharmacy or the GP it would still be free...although remember the NHS is only free at source we almost all pay taxes that fund the NHS.If you suffer from certain conditions you are exempt from all prescription charges, whether they pertain to your main ailment or not.I expect there are many who disagree with that policy, especially if they aren't eligible.If this scheme didn't save GP time and money I pretty sure it would be scrapped.

eslick

http://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/save-nhs-from-bankruptcy-bag-yourself-a-bargain-same-time-e-g-paracetamol-500mgs-2569766appropriate thread to go along with this one.








Yes! Sorry I type ridiculously slowly and these replies were posted while I was tapping away.

What a relief to see people speaking out to defend our NHS from irresponsibility. Makes sense doesn't it!

ShootistUK

I think some are missing the point here. This is to save the NHS money by … I think some are missing the point here. This is to save the NHS money by not having to visit a GP first to get a free prescription item that the person is already entitled to. It costs the NHS around £45 for a 10 minute GP consultation. So going to pharmacy direct and getting your free item saves £45 cost to the NHS. I agree that some items are cheap to buy from supermarket etc but still a major cost saver over seeing the GP first to be prescribed the item on a free prescription.



"..going to pharmacy direct and getting your free item saves £45 cost to the NHS". No it doesn't -- It just means that another patient takes the potential appointment, at the same (alleged) £45 cost.

​where do they get these figures from £45 quid to see a doctor for 10 minutes I don't see how that works doctors are paid per week fixed amount plus over time if the surgery is booked they don't give u appointment after hours so it's all made up. if a doctor had 2 or 3 appointments in 1 day would he be be paid less in don't think so. and the £ 45 pound cost is another nonsense figure so a surgery with say 4 doctors costs over 10k per day roughly plus the nurses on top and reception staff and bills on top what would u say there cost is another 3-5k on top.

whok1844

Just to bear inmind example Calpol costs around £2 to buy over the … Just to bear inmind example Calpol costs around £2 to buy over the counter but on free prescriptions actualy costs NHS over £10 for the same Calpol as chemist's commision and other costs are charged to NHS . So may be we can think of saving money for NHS by paying little amount so more funds are left for serious illneses.



​I just don't understand the government it is doing these things in purpose to basically cause the NHS to fail and go private a lot of people are of the view take it for a ride it's going stop anyway. The government should basically fund there own pharmaceutical manufacturing plant and stop using the other companies for medicines whom inflate the prices and soon it would all blow over when ever I got abroad I buy stuff like paracetamol it costs about 30/40p for a bottle which is sold here for 1/2 quid and branded stuff over 3 /4 quid and stuff like antibiotics costs around 1.25/2 quid for 7 days supply so why doesnt the government just have the medicines manufacturered themselves for these normal type of medicines it would save a lot of money aswell and not just drain the NHS

It really is the government who is trying bring
the NHS on to its knees 6-8 hour waiting times in hospitals is seen as normal and gp surgeries are run by some idiots emergency appointments are the worse they tell u ring at 8am then the phone is engaged after 200+ calls they pick up to tell you all appointments have gone ring back at 1pm and same again ring back tomorrow and so round and round. If you are lucky enough they give u appointment it take 2-3 hours to be seen doesn't take sherlock homes to figure out u shouldn't give everyone a same time or at least they should know how long it will take for patients to be seen.
Edited by: "MynameisM" 14th Mar
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