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How to save money when ordering prescription treatments online

With the current cost of living crisis, it has become even more important for easy access to affordable health care, particularly prescriptions drugs, which are critical to maintain whole person health.

Numerous people often worry about visiting their doctor because of the payment you need to pay when you are prescribed prescription medicines. It is entirely understandable, especially in cases of financial issues and costs, but putting off going to the doctor because of this can be incredibly dangerous.

Not being seen by a doctor will not address your problem, continually avoiding the doctor can result in a lower quality of life and increases the risk of your ailment getting worse. This could lead to a domino effect and lead to a whole host of other problems down the line. If you have concerns about the cost of prescription only medicines uk, here a few tips for saving money:

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Check to see if you’re entitled to free prescriptions

In the UK, you are entitled to prescription only medicines UK on a prescription for free if you are under 16, over 60, in full-time education between 16 and 18, pregnant or had a baby in the last year, have a valid medical exemption, or an NHS inpatient.

There’s a simple way to find out if you’re eligible for free NHS prescriptions and any help with other NHS costs. Use the NHS eligibility checker to check if you are eligible for free prescriptions.


If you’re someone who requires regular prescriptions, you should take advantage of prepay certificates. These act like a season ticket at a football club would, covering all of your prescriptions for a set price. You will save money if you need more than 3 items in 3 months, or 11 items in 12 months.

The current prescription charge in England is £9.35 per item. Prepayment certificates cost:

  • £30.35 for 3 months
  • £108.10 for 12 months

The quickest way to get a prepayment certificate would be to purchase it online. The PPC will start from the day you submit your application, unless a different start date has been requested, but the start date must be within 1 month or after the date of your application.

The certificate can be sent to an email address, printed at the end of your application, or can be received by post.

Some high street pharmacies may be able to sell you a prepayment certificate. However, you will not be able to pay by direct debit if you buy a PPC at a pharmacy.

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Ask for a larger prescription

If the prescription medicines aren’t dangerous if overused, ask your GP if they can prescribe a large prescription so that you do not have to come back and pay for another one. Your GP may not be allowed to do this depending on the medication but it’s still worth asking.

Use an online pharmacy and purchase medicines online

There are numerous different websites that work as an online pharmacy where you can buy treatments online and have your prescription sent through the post. In addition to possible savings, this is also a great option for those who don’t live near their pharmacist.

The majority of these services are available if you’re over 18 and your GP surgery in in England. Meds online are also available whether you are exempt or you have to pay for your NHS prescriptions.

Private prescriptions are also available online via an online doctor. A simple consultation will need to be filled out before prescription medicines online can be purchased, which is then scrutinised by an online doctor in order to decide if the medication is suitable. It’s a safe and discreet way to get prescription treatments delivered directly to your door.

When you want to buy treatments online from pharmacies, always make sure that they are above board and the website is a registered pharmacy using the General Pharmaceutical Council.

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Go over the counter

On the opposite end of using an online pharmacy, if your doctor prescribes a common medication that is also available to purchase over the counter, such as allergy tablets, it is worth looking to see if it is cheaper from a high street pharmacist. They will more than likely be cheaper than the current prescription price. Supermarkets are also another cheap option that typically sell cheap, common medicines.

Going over the counter doesn’t just save you money, it also saves the NHS money. The UK government introduced a policy to reduce the amount of money the NHS spends on prescriptions for treating minor conditions that usually get better on their own.

Before this policy, the NHS spent around £569 million a year on prescriptions for medicines that can be bought from a pharmacy or supermarket, such as paracetamol. By reducing the amount, the NHS spends on over the counter medicines, it can give priority to treatments for people with more serious conditions, such as cancer, diabetes and mental health problems.

Be proactive with your health and seek preventative care

Lastly, making sure that you seek out preventative care, like an annual check-up, can help detect illness or disease early so it’s more likely to be preventable or treatable. Getting ahead of an illness or disease, can help reduce your need to take medicine.

After getting the results, work with your doctor or healthcare provider to create a roadmap for setting short- and long-term health goals. This can mean incorporating more exercise, quitting unhealthy habits like smoking or keeping up-to-date on immunizations.

One of the best ways to save money medically is to invest in yourself. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and managing chronic conditions can go a long way in saving future pennies.

You should never put off going to the doctor, but it is understandable that people have financial concerns. Some of the above advice should help save you some money. From purchasing meds online to purchasing meds over the counter, every penny saved goes a long way.

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