Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 12 July 2014

Prescription charges to rise by 20p

Prescription charges in England will rise by 20p from April 1

Prescription charges in England will rise 20p to £7.85 from April 1 under changes announced by ministers.

Health Minister Earl Howe said NHS dental charges will also increase on the same date.

In a written statement to Parliament, he said the cost of a prescription pre-payment certificate (PPC) would remain unchanged.

Earl Howe said regulations would be laid in Parliament to implement the changes.

He said the cost of a three-month PPC would remain at £29.10 for another year, with an annual PPC unchanged at £104.

"PPCs offer savings for those needing four or more items in three months or 14 or more items in one year," he said.

Charges for a band 1 course of dental treatment will rise 50p to £18, band 2 will rise £1 to £49 and the cost of band 3 will increase by £5 to £214.

The minister said: "Dental charges represent an important contribution to the overall cost of dental services. The exact amount raised will be dependent upon the level and type of primary dental care services commissioned by the NHS Commissioning Board and the proportion of charge-paying patients who attend dentists and the level of treatment they require."

Charges for wigs and fabric supports will be increased by an overall 2.5%.

The value of NHS optical vouchers will increase by 1% "in order to continue to provide help with the cost of spectacles and contact lenses", Earl Howe said.

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