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Green Party pledges to abolish prescription charges in England

Party wants an NHS that is genuinely free at the point of use.
Prescriptions

The Green Party would abolish prescription charges in England as part of a drive to make the NHS genuinely free at the point of use, party co-leader Caroline Lucas has said.

Ms Lucas believes the 8.60 charge is forcing some people to choose between food and medication. She accuses the government of charging people for being ill.

The charges have already been scrapped in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Sickness penalty

Launching the party's manifesto in Bristol today, Ms Lucas said: 'Every day this government is fining people for falling sick by charging for prescriptions.

'GPs have warned that prescription charges force some patients to choose between spending their earnings on food, or essential medical treatment. This is not acceptable.

'It's also a false economy, because not

The Green Party would abolish prescription charges in England as part of a drive to make the NHS genuinely free at the point of use, party co-leader Caroline Lucas has said.


Scrapping prescription charges would cost an estimated £550 million a year.
Picture: iStock

Ms Lucas believes the £8.60 charge is forcing some people to choose between food and medication. She accuses the government of charging people for being ill.

The charges have already been scrapped in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Sickness penalty

Launching the party's manifesto in Bristol today, Ms Lucas said: 'Every day this government is fining people for falling sick by charging for prescriptions.

'GPs have warned that prescription charges force some patients to choose between spending their earnings on food, or essential medical treatment. This is not acceptable.

'It's also a false economy, because not taking prescribed medication can cause people to miss work and lead to additional GP or hospital appointments.'

Cost-saving measure

A three-month prescription is currently worth £29.10, while a yearly scheme costs £104.

Scrapping prescription charges would cost an estimated £550 million every year. The Greens say they would pay for this by getting rid of the NHS internal market, which the Centre for Health and the Public Interest has said could save £4.5 billion a year on areas such as procurement.

Other senior figures in the party, such as co-leader Jonathan Bartley and former leader Natalie Bennett, will give a series of speeches across the UK calling for a shift in Britain's political climate and more of a focus on the environment.


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