‘Check Before You Tick’ is a campaign by NHS England and NHS BSA to help patients better understand who is eligible for free prescriptions, and if eligible, how to claim correctly to avoid unnecessary penalty charges of up to £100.
Most at risk of a penalty charge fine are the following patient groups:
- People on benefits mistakenly assume that all benefits entitle them to free prescriptions. This group is also the least likely to have their penalty charge rescinded.
- Pregnant women and mothers of children under one year of age are eligible to claim free prescriptions, but require a valid Maternity Exemption Certificate to do so.
The campaign also encourages people who pay for their prescriptions to take advantage of other means of reducing costs, such as prepayment certificates and the NHS Low Income Scheme.