§ Mrs. Beckett
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what percentage of prescriptions cost less than £5; what is the(a) average and (b) median cost of a prescription item; how many prescriptions were issued by doctors in the last year; how many prescription items were dispensed by pharmacists last year, in total, and by the family health service authority area; and what has been the total revenue generated by charging for prescriptions in each of the last 15 years.
§ Mr. Malone
The available information has been placed in the Library. Figures for the number of prescriptions issued by doctors are not available centrally. The extensive arrangements for charge exemption and for remission of charges under the national health service low-income scheme, coupled with the prescription prepayment certificate scheme, ensure that no-one need be deterred from obtaining any necessary prescribed medication for financial reasons.