E-petition 594390 is seeking to protect free NHS prescriptions for over 60s. The petition closed on 18 February 2022 with 46,495 signatures but has been selected by the Petitions Committee for debate despite not reaching the usual 100,000 signatures threshold. 

The Government responded to this petition saying that no decision has yet been taken on the consultation to align the upper exemption age from prescription charges with the state pension age. They added that “89% of prescription items are dispensed free of charge. People who pay for their prescription charges and need many prescription items can save money with a prescription prepayment certificate (PPC).”

The following Commons Library briefings provide further information on NHS prescription charges and the Government’s consultation: 

The Petitions Committee published a summary of a survey the Committee  conducted to inform this debate. They asked people about their views on the proposal to align the age of entitlement to free prescriptions with the State Pension age: 

  • Summary of public engagement by the Petitions Committee on prescription charges for people aged 60 or over, reported to the House on 27 February 2023, HC 73

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