Prescription abusers get toothpaste on the NHS

TOOTHPASTE, suncream and plasters are some of the items being dished out by the NHS, it has been claimed.

According to the Scottish Conservatives, a dossier they have compiled shows abusers of the free prescription system going to their GPs to stock up on supplies rather than buying them at supermarkets.

One doctor even said it was like people were coming in with “shopping lists”.

Sign up to our public interest bulletins - get the latest news on the Coronavirus

Sign up to our public interest bulletins - get the latest news on the Coronavirus

The document is said to outline several examples of abuse, such as one person who was issued a prescription for a tube of toothpaste worth £2.35.

Another example showed a passenger at Edinburgh Airport who was given a free emergency prescription by a pharmacist for travel sickness pills.

Tory health spokesman Jackson Carlaw said he found the details of the behaviour “alarming” and personally called on health secretary Nicola Sturgeon to put things right.

He said: “This is becoming quite alarming. I will be raising the cases we have found with the health secretary in parliament and demanding to know how many prescriptions are now being written by pharmacists on the premises.

“We warned her this would happen and now she needs to admit that she got this policy wrong.

“The danger is as more and more people realise that the system is open to this kind of abuse, the bigger the problem becomes.”

Holyrood’s health committee was warned recently by health ministers that pressure was mounting financially due to the cost of the country’s drugs bill.

Figures released last week show Scotland’s bill for free prescriptions has escalated to £1.8billion – a rise of £36m since the charges were abolished by the SNP government last year.