What are Private Prescriptions,

There are two types of prescriptions in the UK, NHS (National Health Service) prescriptions and private prescriptions. A private prescription is when a patient pays for the medicines on their prescription rather than them being subsidised by the NHS. Any doctor who is UK registered and has a GMC (General Medical Council) number can write a private prescription and private prescriptions are not written on NHS prescription paper but can be written on any piece of paper.

A patient who wants to obtain a private prescription will normally have to pay a fee to the doctor who writes it and will also have to pay a fee to the pharmacy that dispenses the prescribed medication. The fees for private prescriptions are based on the cost of the drug, the amount of medicine supplied and the dispensing fee. The dispensing fee can a flat rate fee or calculated using the actual cost of the medicines. The way these fees are calculated means that you may pay more or less than the standard NHS prescription charge depending on the pharmacy that dispenses your drugs.

Because private prescriptions are not subsidised by the government you could end up paying more for your medicine than you may be used to and costs can vary depending on the medicine that you require. It is worth while checking out the fees charged by different pharmacies before you purchase any medication as different pharmacies will have different fees.

There are a number of drugs that are on a list which are not allowed to be prescribed on the NHS which leaves the patient no option but to get a private prescription. This can have its benefits as there are some drugs like amoxicillin that actually cost less on a private prescription than the standard 7.65 NHS charge. If you feel that the cost of your drugs you need are too much you should consult with your GP to see if there are alternative treatments available through the NHS. Alternatively you can take out private health insurance which will cover you for the cost of a private prescription.

Many people nowadays are turning to online pharmacies as they have realised that getting prescribed medications can be quite expensive and they can get the same level of service online as well as being able to get their drugs at a lower cost in a lot of cases. Some people prefer to avoid the hassle of visiting their GP to get a prescription and instead choose to order their medication from an online pharmacy. In some cases doctors can be reluctant to supply certain drugs and some patients are also embarrassed about the medicines they are asking for and prefer to retain some level of anonymity.

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