Thank you very much indeed for taking the time to share your thoughts and concerns with me regarding asthma prescription charges. All carefully read and noted.
Asthma is not yet included on the list of exemptions which entitle people to free prescriptions, and the Government has no plans to change the list of medical conditions exempt from prescription charge.
I can appreciate that this is not the response you were hoping for however, it should be noted that prescription charges generate a valuable income to the NHS budget of several hundred million pounds per year - money contributing to patient care that would have to be found elsewhere if these charges were abolished.
You may be interested to know that there is already a provision in place for people who require multiple prescriptions, such as those with long-term conditions who have to pay charges. The Prescription Prepayment Certificate (PPC) allows holders to pay no further charge at the point of dispensing, with no limit of the number of items which can be obtained under the certificate. The Government has supported this scheme by freezing the cost of the PPC for another year, meaning that a holder of a 12-month PPC can get all the prescriptions they need for roughly £2 per week. I believe these are constructive measures to help those most in need.
Once again, thank you very much indeed for taking the time to bring your views to my attention. I have taken up your views and concerns with the Secretary of State for Health, the Rt. Hon. Matt Hancock.
With best wishes.
Member of Parliament for Woking