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Type 1: Prescription fine

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by molivers73, Nov 26, 2014.

  1. robswife

    robswife Family member · Newbie

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    Quoted my 1st post rather than typing it again....

    UPDATE...

    My husband applied for the card and has received it, interestingly the letter says they will send a reminder when it is due for renewal in 5 years.

    He has spoken to the BSA numerous times....telling them he has never had one, has never been told he needs one, and even asking hypothetically if they can only check back 2 years whats to say he didnt get one 4 1/2 years ago and its just not showing on their system but they have now said no end of he needs to pay.

    His GP has drawn a blank and can't / wont do anything ( when he went in to get the form the GP said hed look into it and see if there was anything he could do which is what we've been waiting for)

    Ive copied the link for Mr Jamie Reed and will email him, Our time is running out - the deadline for payment is the 23rd feb - opinions please ... do we just need to suck it up and pay?
     
  2. shelleyh

    shelleyh Type 1 · Member

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    My advice here would be to pay £50 by the due date which will stp any further penalties being added then the remainder over the next two months. They cannot start any action against you that way and it makes you feel like it's a minor victory, if nothing else
     
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  3. anna29

    anna29 Type 2 · Well-Known Member
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    Question - those of you that have been fined .
    Have you changed your usual pharmacy or chemists ?
    Changed your address or location ?
    Then been fined ?
     
  4. shelleyh

    shelleyh Type 1 · Member

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    No my pharmacy remains the same but apparently there are random checks being undertaken so I guess I was just unlucky.
     
  5. Heathenlass

    Heathenlass Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I'm sorry to hear that, @robswife :( It seems to vary from case to case who ends up having to pay , but by and large the official line is that if you are not in possession of an actual up to date exemption certificate, then you have falsely claimed that you have one . Whether this was from lack of knowledge, wrong information given or an error makes no difference .

    I have to agree with @shelleyh , at least by paying it avoids the penalty.

    I'm heartfelt sorry for all who have gone through this and ended up paying, it's difficult in these cash strapped times :(

    Signy
     
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  6. robswife

    robswife Family member · Newbie

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    No to all the above.... been at the same gp, same home address .. and using the same pharmacy for the last 11 years.
     
  7. edi

    edi Type 2 · Newbie

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  8. PATN

    PATN Type 1 · Member

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    Hello All,
    Sorry if this has already been posted but the following link may give more of an insight into why people are only now receiving fines.

    The following can be found on the Diabetes UK website.

    http://www.diabetes.org.uk/Guide-to...ates»&utm_campaign=February+e-newsletter+2015

    Here is a copy and paste:



    Diabetes UK home page


    Free prescriptions

    Free prescriptions (England)

    If you use insulin or medicine to manage your diabetes you're entitled to free prescriptions but if you’re under 60 and living in England you must have a medical exemption certificate before you can claim them.

    Prescriptions are free for everybody in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

    Why you need a certificate to get free prescriptions

    A recent crackdown on people with diabetes claiming free prescriptions without a certificate has led to them being fined. By claiming a free prescription without a certificate you risk being fined up to £100.

    What to do if you've been issued with a fine.

    What to do if you haven’t got a certificate

    If you don't have a medical exemption certificate and you want to claim free prescriptions then you will need to get a form to apply for the certificate from your doctor’s surgery.

    The application form for the certificate is called FP92A. You will need to fill it in then your doctor will sign it and send it off.

    If you do not have a certificate or your application for one has not yet been processed then you will need to pay for your prescription. Make sure you ask your pharmacist for a FP57 receipt and refund claim form and you will be able to claim the money back once your certificate has been issued. This is because the medical exemption certificate is backdated one month from when it is issued.

    Once issued a certificate lasts for five years. Once you are registered for a certificate you should receive a reminder letter a month before it runs out.

    Why haven’t I heard about this before?

    The NHS Business Services Authority (NHS BSA) issues and renews medical exemption certificates. It took over issuing reminders in 2002. If you were registered for a certificate then or have been registered since then you should receive reminders about the need to have an up to date certificate. However, if you did not have a certificate in 2002 then you will not be on the NHS BSA’s system and you will not have received any reminder letters.

    Likewise, if you have moved since the last time you registered and did not update them with your address then you will also not have received any reminders. It is down to pharmacists to check you have the certificate and given everyone who uses insulin or takes medicine for their diabetes is entitled to free prescriptions checking has not always been thorough.

    Why are lots of people being fined now?

    Diabetes UK met with the NHS BSA to discuss this. We found out that the responsibility for checking exemption from paying prescriptions was transferred to the NHS BSA in 2014. This had previously been done locally and the NHS BSA are using a much more thorough system than previously. Unfortunately, this has resulted in lots of people who have had diabetes for a long time, without ever realising they needed a certificate, being issued with a fine.

    What is Diabetes UK doing?

    We are making sure people who live with diabetes know that they must have a certificate to claim free prescriptions.

    We’d welcome your help with this too. Please spread the word to other people you know who also have diabetes. Send them this link and share our Facebook posts and tweets about the problem.

    We are also speaking to the NHS BSA about ways they can make the current system fairer. We believe it is unfair that people who had no idea they needed a certificate and have never been sent a reminder about it are being fined.

    We want the NHS BSA to first issue warnings to people who have diabetes and have claimed for a free prescription without a certificate. We also think they should refund those people who have been fined.

    The NHS BSA are now carrying out their own awareness raising campaign but for many people it is too late. We would like a period of grace so the need for certificates for people with diabetes can be properly communicated to them.

    What to do if you have been issued with a fine

    Call: If you have been issued with a fine and received no reminder letter then we recommend calling the NHS BSA and explaining this to them. You can call them on 0300 330 9291.

    Tell us: Hearing your stories will help inform our work with the NHS BSA and give us a clearer idea of the extent of the problem for people with diabetes. We are also looking for case studies to help us demonstrate that the changes to the way the system operates means people with diabetes are being fined unfairly. Please get in contact. Ring *0345 123 2399 or email the policy team at [email protected]

    Write: We would also suggest raising this with your MP. We have created a template letter (Word, 10KB) for you to use which explains what has happened, leaves space for you to include your own story and asks your MP to write to the Secretary of State for Health Jeremy Hunt. You can find your MP and their contact details here.

    Further information

    To pay a fine, see the rules on having a certificate or to contact the service, go to the medical exemption certificate page on the NHS NBA website.

    *Calls to 0345 numbers cost no more than calls to geographic (01 and 02) numbers and must be included in inclusive minutes on mobile phones and discount schemes. Calls from landlines are typically charged between 2p and 10p per minute while calls from mobiles typically cost between 10p and 40p per minute. Calls from landlines and mobiles to 0345 numbers are included in free call packages.
    Calls may be recorded for quality and training purposes.

    Find out about medical exemption certificates including paying fines for not having one, on the NHS website

    Check the rules on free prescriptions and other costs on the NHS website

    Downloads

    Template letter to MP (Word, 10KB)

    Share this:
     
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  9. donnellysdogs

    donnellysdogs Type 1 · Master

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    What gets me is the people that were diagnosed pre 2002 - how are they being informed? Uts all well and good giving penalty charges but if you were diagnosed pre certificates what have they done to inform thos persons?
     
  10. tim2000s

    tim2000s Type 1 · Expert
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    The thing is, I had a certificate pre-2002, because I was told I needed it by someone when I left Uni, and I may have been lacksadaisical at renewing it, but I knew I needed to (and have done at least twice in the intervening years).
     
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  11. rubold

    rubold Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    There were certificates before 2002 that should have been renewed every 5 years, but whether reminders were sent is another matter. As I have said in previos posts I was diagnosed in 1972 and until this thread started I had never known about the existence of such certificates. At my original diagnosis my doctor and consultant explained which box to tick on the back of the prescription, there was no application form offered to apply for a certificate and it was explained to me as a blanket exemption for diabetes drug prescriptions, so no individual certificate was required. I still maintain that any older diabetics being fined should ask their pharmacist why certificates were never requested when drugs were dispensed.
     
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  12. CarbsRok

    CarbsRok Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I was diagnosed in 1965 so had my first certificate in the 1970's
     
  13. TopCat_999

    TopCat_999 Type 2 · Member

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    Just a thought. Wouldn't it be easier to administer the system if the information was printed on the prescription to indicate that you were a diabetic (or had one of the other conditions giving exemption) and therefor exempt from prescription charges. After all the doctor making the prescription has all your medical records on their computer. Just think the NHS could get rid of a whole department (I just wonder how much they cost I think I may make an FOI request to find out) 1- how much the department costs to run 2 - how much the department has recovered 3 - how many people with diabetes have been fined for not having a MEC
     
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  14. mike@conisbrough

    [email protected] Type 2 · Member

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    Hrom PATN
    I cannot believe the number of people that are blaming others for their own mistakes.

    Look at the highlighted areas especially the declaration !!

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. angelicbaby

    angelicbaby Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Although it is all of our responsibility to check information we are signing, I do feel that Diabetes UK would be wise to include informing all GP practices, and pharmacists of the new crackdown and involve them in highlighting the issue. Every time a Diabetic or other exemption condition is made, the Surgery could ask the patient whether they have the relevant exemption card/certificate and the dispensing chemist could ask to see the card or confirm that the patient has one. Instead of us all complaining about the unfairness of it all, we would be all wiser to try and assist each other in getting the relevant paperwork in order.
     
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  16. mike@conisbrough

    [email protected] Type 2 · Member

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    Why should the surgery or pharmacist be responsible for your prescription?

    If the pharmacist asks you and you say No does that mean he can refuse to issue the prescription until you have paid for it?

    Get real, your prescription, your declaration, your signature - your responsibility !!
     
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  17. lovinglife

    lovinglife Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    The best post in this thread, wish I could like it more than once
     
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  18. Heathenlass

    Heathenlass Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I don't think that is what @angelicbaby was saying at all .

    I understood her post to mean that on diagnosis of any exemption condition, it is ensured that the patient is made aware of the necessity for applying for the exemption certificate and the form issued to the patient. Unfortunately many HCP's whilst being aware of the prescription exemption, are unaware of the process assuming it to be automatic. That's not necessarily their fault, it's a beurocracy outside of their remit. Hopefully, that will now change .

    As I understand it, it actually is necessary for pharmacy staff to ask to see the card at least once, so that the number can be entered into the system. If evidence is not available, then this needs to be stated by the pharmacist on section 3 highlighted on your scanned form . The pharmacist should then advise the patient that they will have to pay, but issue a receipt along with advise that this payment will be refunded.I have no clue what would happen if the patient was unable to pay up front.

    I don't see any absolution of personal responsibility in that ?

    So how does that differ from what you have been saying ?

    I actually agree with your stance on the whole issue , @[email protected], but I do think that last post was inaccurate as to what the poster was saying, and unnecessarily abrupt.

    Signy
     
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  19. dannyw

    dannyw Type 1 · BANNED

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    If the pharmacist doesn't see evidence, it doesn't mean we have to then pay. You would still get prescription free as you signed saying you was a holder of a current exemption certificate. If you do not show certificate at time of collection, you still get meds but pharmacist would just sign to say evidence not seen.
     
  20. mike@conisbrough

    [email protected] Type 2 · Member

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    And if you haven't got the Exemption Certificate card you should be paying.

    Every time I go to pick up my prescription I ask if they want to see the card and every time they say NO, it isn't their job to police prescription abuse.
     
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