Welsh patients who have to pay for a prescription at hospitals in England will be able to reclaim the money under new rules.
The free prescriptions policy is being amended so that Welsh patients treated over the border can recover the £7.20 they pay at hospital pharmacies if they are not exempt because of their age or medical condition.
Prescription charges were abolished in Wales in 2007, but since then Welsh patients have had to continue paying for prescriptions in England.
Health minister Edwina Hart (pictured) said it was “unreasonable” that patients still paid if they had to collect a prescription in England.
According to the Assembly Government, around 200 people will benefit from the changes in legislation each year when they come into force by the autumn.
People living near the border with a GP in England receive a card so that the charge of a prescription is wiped out when they take their prescription to a pharmacy in Wales.
Mrs Hart said: “It is unreasonable for Welsh patients who have no choice but to receive their hospital care in England to have to pay for prescriptions.”
Copyright © Press Association 2009
“What is unreasonable is that patients in Shropshire have to jostle for postion in their hospitals for treatment against patients who manage to climb Offas Dyke. If they (the Welsh) want a totaly free health service, then the Welsh Assembly should provide it in Wales!” – Malcolm Wallace, Halesowen (but a Shropshire resident)