A Sussex man is fuming after he was told he would have to pay to have his prescriptions delivered.
Jamie Marks from Horsham, who suffers from multiple serious long term health conditions, said he has had his medication delivered free to his home for more than 20 years.
But now Boots Pharmacy have said he will have to pay £5 a delivery, or £55 a year from September 30.
Jamie, who can be housebound for weeks on end, said: “It’s absolutely outrageous. It’s a joke.
“I accept they’re a private company. [But] this has just come out of the blue. I have never known charges.”
A spokesman for Boots said the firm has recently launched an online repeat prescription service, which includes free postal delivery for all patients, but Boots has now begun charging for prescriptions delivered from its stores.
Jamie said although he was not badly impacted by the new charges, he feared households with several people who require deliveries would be burdened by the costs, which are charged per patient.
He added: “I have raised this for other people. I’m very concerned about people with young children who are seriously ill.
“They could end up with a huge amount of money coming out [of their accounts].
“If it was per household it would not be so bad.”
Jamie urged the firm to consider basing the charge on income.
He said: “I would like to see it be subsidised or means tested so the most vulnerable in society do not [have] barriers to medication.”
The Boots spokesman added the firm would continue to provide a free delivery service from the store ‘where this is a clinical need, or an emergency delivery is needed, including those who are receiving end of life or palliative care’.
Pharmacy director for Boots UK Richard Bradley said: “Community pharmacy is unquestionably facing challenges and we need to adapt our offer to respond.
“As a result, we have invested heavily in digital technologies to offer a free, easy-to-use service for delivery of repeat prescriptions ordered online.
“Patients who make use of the in-store service will be required to pay for delivery should they require it, with exceptions in place to cover our most vulnerable patients in circumstances where their care necessitates delivery.”
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