NHS dental care and free prescriptions

Our ‘Care and treatment: your rights and choices’ information explains your rights and choices with regard to your epilepsy care and treatment. ‘Rights’ are in the NHS Constitution and the Handbook to the NHS Constitution, and you are entitled to them by law. Where we say ‘you should’, you may not have a legal right, but these are recommendations made in the NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guideline on epilepsy.


You have a right to access NHS dental care

The NHS will provide any clinically necessary treatment needed to keep your mouth, teeth and gums healthy and free of pain.” nhs.uk/nhs-services/dentists

Anyone whose dentist thinks they need dental treatment that is clinically necessary, has the right to have this treatment done on the NHS.

You may have to pay a charge for your dental treatment and there are three bands of charges, but for some people, such as those on a low income, NHS dental treatment is free.

You should be informed about the treatment options and your dentist must make clear what will be paid for by the NHS and what you must pay for privately. 

Find a dental surgery that’s convenient for you and contact them to see what appointments are available. If you cannot find a dentist accepting NHS patients, call NHS England’s Customer Contact Centre on 0300 311 2233. 

If you are unhappy with the service your dentist is providing, you can complain to your dental practice manager or to NHS England ‘s Customer Contact Centre on the above number.

For more about NHS dental treatment visit nhs.uk/nhs-services/dentists

You are entitled to free prescriptions 

You are entitled to free prescriptions for your anti-seizure medication (ASM) and for any other prescriptions you have. This is referred to as ‘medical exemption’ from paying prescription charges.

To apply for a medical exemption certificate, ask your GP or doctor for an application form. This needs to be signed by your GP or hospital doctor. The certificate lasts for five years and will need to be renewed every five years until your 60th birthday, when prescriptions are free anyway.

A medical exemption certificate form is not needed in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as all prescriptions are free in these countries.

For more about medical exemption certificates visit nhs.uk/nhs-services/prescriptions-and-pharmacies/who-can-get-free-prescriptions

For more about the NHS Constitution visit nhs.uk/NHSConstitution 
For more about the Handbook to the NHS Constitution visit gov.uk/government/publications/supplements-to-the-nhs-constitution-for-england
For more about the NICE guideline visit nice.org.uk/guidance/ng217For more about the NHS Constitution visit 

Information updated: March 2023


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