Sunday, 30 August 2015
NHS Demands Young Mother Pay £700 Fine for Clerical Error
Tracy, a nurse in Lincoln, says that her daughter has just been landed with a bill of £700 by the NHS, because she claimed free prescriptions and dental treatment while pregnant and shortly after giving birth.
Surely the law is that pregnant women and new mothers don't have to pay for prescriptions and dental treatment? Yes, it is. Tracy's daughter is a social worker who has just had a baby and is on maternity leave. She should have been entitled to free medical care. But it seems that a midwife forgot to fill in some paperwork and tell her she needed to apply for a special card.
So despite having a legal RIGHT to this treatment, she got a shocking bill for £700. As well as the charges of £8.20 for each prescription, they slapped on a fine of £49 PER PRESCRIPTION, and topped it with a £200 charge for dental treatment.
The family is fuming and wondering who they can turn to to fight this.
It is bad enough that people in England have to pay prescription charges while people in Scotland and Wales don't. If this young mother lived in Scotland, she would never have to pay for medicines, pregnant or not, and she would get more money allocated to her baby's health care. To be denied your legal entitlement because of a bureaucratic error, not your own fault, and then ruthlessly fined for it, is intolerable. The young mother is a British citizen, of British parents, a working tax-payer and law-abiding person, unlike many of those who impudently grab free treatment on the NHS every year at our expense. If she is forced to pay the fine, her child will share her hardship.
Why didn't the pharmacies and the dentists who allowed her to claim free treatment, because she was obviously pregnant, warn her that she needed a card? Whoever sent that bill out should be sacked.