Prescription refusal

  LinH 19:18 15 Apr 2010

I was under the impression - obviously mistaken - that once one reached retirement age one was entitled to free prescriptions.


I have recently, at aged 66, been diagnosed with arthritis and found a quite effective gel called Voltaren Emulgel. It's quite expensive at about £20 so I thought I'd get it on presciption via my surgery, only to be informed by my G.P. that, according to the local PCT, if it is available over the counter the patient is expected to buy it so prescription refused! Wonderful, after 50 years of contributions, when you want it you can't have it - unless you are prepared pay for it!

I don't suppose for one instant that the above applies to career benefit applicants, illegal immigrants, so called asylum seekers and anyone else who wants to freeload on our NHS.

Is it no wonder that, albeit that this is just a very, very small example of perceived unfairness, that extremist groups like the BNP continue to flourish.


  wiz-king 19:28 15 Apr 2010

Prescription have to be prescribed by a qualified medical practitioner, there are limits to what each qualification lets you prescribe. There is also a list of medicines that are 'OTC' or GSL which do not need a prescription, it is up to the PHT if they pay for these - most don't.

  wellshgit 19:33 15 Apr 2010

My wife gets this on prescription here in Wales.

  canarieslover 19:43 15 Apr 2010

It is available on line at a much lower cost. I've never used the company, but worth a look.
click here

  LinH 19:49 15 Apr 2010

You are probably right but it doesn't alter the fact that it is still unfair.

A sort of postcode lottery perhaps?

fourm member
This is a completely new situation and no, the only thing my G.P. recommended was 100gram paracetamol twice a day. I was going to Google around to see what I could find out, but your information is extremely useful, many thanks.

I did check a few online suppliers, the best (as in funniest) one offered it for sale at £6.50 but wanted £29 postage - err no!

  skeletal 19:50 15 Apr 2010

“Free” prescriptions are a bit of a sore point with me as well. Some years ago my son went to University and like many students took out a student loan. He needed some drugs (very unusual for us, touch wood). There is something about having free prescriptions if you’re a student, or don’t have any income, or something; whatever it was, his friends in almost identical circumstances got free prescriptions. So, my son asked for the same. Oh no, you can’t have free prescriptions because you’ve got some money (the loan). So yes, get into debt (i.e. have negative money) and you can’t have the prescriptions.

And then there was my wife who could not get NHS dental treatment when she was pregnant. Again, perceived wisdom is that pregnant women can have such treatment free.

Go back many many years and my dad went to the doctors for a check-up. “What’s wrong with you?” “Nothing, but I thought it would be good to have a check-up to see if I may be developing problems.”

Doctor went berserk for him “wasting his time”. The NHS is for treating illnesses, not for preventative medicine.

Oh, and I’ve no doubt that the thousands of drunks up and down the country every Friday and Saturday night that end up fighting and getting alcohol poisoning get plenty of free treatment.

Go figure...


  lotvic 20:02 15 Apr 2010

I was precribed Voltarol Emulgel (Diclofenac Diethylammonium) on nhs prescription from GP.
Am now getting a stronger one on prescription Oruvail Gel (2.5% ketoprofen)

Maybe you should ask your GP which alternative gels are available.

  LinH 20:04 15 Apr 2010

Wouldn't even try to's to short!


  LinH 20:08 15 Apr 2010

a valid point and something to go armed with when next I visit my GP.

This has been a useful posting as the replies so far have been very informative.


  morddwyd 20:08 15 Apr 2010

My wife gets standard OTC paracetamol on free prescription, and I have been told I can have one for normal 300 mg aspirin any time I ask.

As pointed out, it's obviously another postcode thing.

  jack 20:13 15 Apr 2010

Doctors make their own rules.
An in depth investigation via the web in what is allowed and not would do no harm and when you find the info to support your case go stick it under the appropriate practitioners nose.

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