After Clause 30, insert the following new Clause:
§ Certificates for exemption from prescription charges
§ "—(1) Regulations made under section 38(3) of the 1946 Act (which authorises regulations providing for the making and recover}, of charges in respect of pharmaceutical services) and regulations made under section 1(1) of the National Health Service Act 1952 (which authorises regulations providing for the making and recovery of charges in respect of the supply, as part of hospital and specialist services under Part II of the 1946 Act, of drugs, medicines and appliances) may each provide for the grant, on payment of such sums as may be so prescribed, of certificates conferring on the persons to whom the certificates are granted exemption from charges otherwise exigible under the regulations in respect of drugs, medicine and appliances supplied during such period as may be so prescribed: and different sums may be so prescribed in relation to different periods.
§ (2) This section shall have effect in Scotland as if, for the references therein to section 38(3) and Part TI of the 1946 Act, there were substituted references respectively to section 40(3) and Part II of the 1947 Act."
§ The Commons agreed to this Amendment but proposed the following Amendment there-to:—
Line 9, leave out ("so") and insert ("thereby")
§ BARONESS PHILLIPS
My Lords, I beg to move that this House doth agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 5 to the Lords Amendment No. 4. This is in fact a drafting Amendment, substituting the use of the word "thereby" for the word "so". My own explanation of this is that "so" refers to the past and "thereby" in fact refers to the present and to the future.
§ Moved, That the House doth agree with the Commons in the said Amendment.—(Baroness Phillips.)253
§ LORD SANDFORD
My Lords, I will not attempt to enter into the discussion of whether this makes any difference at all to the Bill because I am not at all clear that it does. But I should like to say that we are happy to see this clause about prescription charges in the Bill. I think one could say in passing that if the Government had been able to control their reflex actions rather more carefully when they first came into power, and had retained prescription charges, they would have saved themselves a great deal of trouble.