Am I entitled to free NHS prescriptions?

You’re eligible for free NHS prescriptions if at the time the prescription is dispensed you’re in one of the following groups:


  • aged 60 or over 
  • under 16 years old
  • aged 16 - 18 and in full time education 


If you receive one of these benefits below, then you, your partner and any dependent aged under 20 are also entitled to free prescriptions.

  • income Support
  • income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance

You are entitled to free NHS prescriptions if you or your partner receive:

  • Pension Credit Guarantee Credit
  • Pension Credit Guarantee Credit with Savings Credit

If you’re receiving Pension Credit Savings Credit alone, or contribution-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, or contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance then you can apply for help with prescription costs through the NHS Low Income Scheme.

You are entitled to free NHS prescriptions if you receive:

Tax Credits

If you're entitled to or named on:

  • a valid NHS tax credit exemption certificate. 

You qualify for this if you get Child Tax Credits, Working Tax Credits including a disability element (or both), and your annual family income for tax credit purposes is £15,276 or less.

Low Income

You can apply to the NHS Low Income Scheme for one of the below certificates:

  • a valid HC2 certificate, for full help with health costs including NHS prescription charges
  • named on a HC3 certificate, but this is only for partial help with health costs and does not entitle you to free NHS prescriptions

Medical reasons

You qualify for free prescriptions if you:

  • are pregnant or have had a baby in the previous 12 months and have a valid maternity exemption certificate (MatEx)
  • have specific medical condition and have a valid medication exemption certificate (MedEx) 
  • have a valid war pension exemption certificate and the prescription is for your accepted disability 
  • Medication given to NHS hospital inpatients is always free


  • all contraception that is prescribed on an NHS prescription is free


How do I get a medical exemption certificate?