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Prescription Charge Exemption Certificate (Medical)

People with certain medical conditions can get free prescriptions if they have a valid exemption certificate.

You can apply for a medical exemption certificate if you have one of the following medical conditions:

  • a permanent fistula (for example caecostomy, colostomy, laryngostomy or ileostomy) which needs continuous surgical dressing or an appliance.
  • a form of hypoadrenalism (for example, Addison's disease) for which specific substitution therapy is essential
  • diabetes insipidus and other forms of hypopituitarism
  • diabetes mellitus, except where treatment is by diet aloe.
  • hypoparathyroidism
  • myasthenia gravis
  • myxoedema (that is, hypothyroidism which needs thyroid hormone replacement)
  • epilepsy which needs continuous anticonvulsive therapy
  • a continuing physical disability which means you cannot go out without the help of another person
  • cancer and are undergoing treatment for either:
    • the effects of cancer
    • the effects of cancer treatment

These are the only conditions that entitle you to a medical exemption certificate. 

A medical exemption certificate:

  • entitles you to free prescriptions only
  • doesn't cover dental treatment or help with other health costs
  • should be shown when you collect a prescription
  • is valid for five years (or until your 60th birthday, whichever is sooner)

It is your responsibility to check the expiry date, and if you claim free prescriptions after your certificate expires, you could have to pay a penalty charge of £100.

If you have one of the above medical conditions please ask at reception for an application form.

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