Monday, September 29, 2008

Plans to abolish prescription charges in Northern Ireland

NI to scrap prescription charges Plans to abolish prescription charges in Northern Ireland have been announced by NI Health Minister Michael McGimpsey. The cost of a prescription in NI will be reduced to £3 per prescription in January 2009 and will be free of charge by April 2010. The charges were abolished in Wales on 1 April 2007 and are due to be abolished in Scotland. This leaves England as the only country in the UK to retain the charges. (link via BBC News) So much for it being the National Health Service - it's really four different NHS services (for the four countries that make up the United Kingdom: Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England) across the UK since devolution and England appears to be the “poor relation” in healthcare compared with the rest of the UK.

8 comments:

  1. I read this and thought the same as you! We've been here before so to speak so I'm sure that you know my views on the NHS in England. xx

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  2. flighty, you're right we've been here before - and England still gets the short end of the stick. Some things never change.

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  3. I've just found your blog. I'm a Brit living in America, so am enjoying your reverse reflections, as it were.

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  4. Hello iota and welcome! I'm so glad you found my blog.

    Same here - I enjoy reading blogs by other expats, especially Brits living in my home country, as you are.

    I just checked out your blog, Not wrong, just different. I love it! I will add your blog to my blogroll.

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  5. Don't worry, eventually the English will get their dander up - it just takes a longtime for it to happen. But when it does, oh boy - they really do not like to lose.

    Its part of the English character, very 'laissez faire' - until the one step too far and suddenly - UP WITH THIS WE WILL NOT PUT.



    mrs k

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  6. Hello Mrs K, I think you're right regarding one step too far. It seems like this might be it - or very close to it.

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  7. I have to say, I don't really mind paying prescription charges as I work and earn enough to pay. Prescriptions remain free to those who are not working. I'd rather that the money were spent on other matters.

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  8. Hello, cb.The point is that three of the four countries which comprise the UK have abolished or are in the process of abolishing prescription charges for everybody. Why should England alone be charging patients for prescriptions?

    It's worth noting that the Patients’ Association has condemned the Government’s decision to exclude England from the trend towards free prescriptions.

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