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Conservatives vow to end free prescriptions in Wales


The Conservative Party will scrap free prescriptions for all in Wales if it gains power in the assembly.

The party says those who can afford it should pay a modest charge in view of the huge financial pressures on the Welsh NHS.

Free prescriptions were rolled out in Wales two years ago. Conservative health spokesman Andrew RT Davies said: ‘Everyone in Wales knows that because of Labour’s debt crisis, our public services are under massive pressure.

So it’s only fair that to protect those who really need help and to improve services that have been allowed to decline under Labour, we ask those who can afford it to make a contribution.’

He added the same people who were eligible for free prescriptions prior to the universal policy would qualify, as would cancer patients.

However, in a statement the assembly government said: ‘GPs use their discretion in determining what medication is prescribed based on the patient’s clinical needs to avoid the risk of people trying to abuse free prescriptions.

‘Free prescriptions are a long-term investment in improving health. If people aren’t put off seeking the appropriate care, due to financial reasons, their health will improve.’


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Readers' comments (2)

  • This is just the start of increasing charges for NHS services if the Tories take power. The 'H' in NHS stands for 'Health' not 'Hospital' but the Tories (and unfortunately, Labour as well) seem determined to make us pay for more and more fornon-hospital health service. Just look at the high cost of glasses and dentistry.

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  • What the public really wants is equity across the regions. All free or none free. Why should England subsidise Wales and Scotland? I would prefer a lower charge but across the UK

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