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We oppose patient equipment charges

17 April 2014

GPs in south Warwickshire are considering charging patients who are disabled or recovering from an accident or operation to contribute towards the cost of devices that are vital to their mobility.

This could mean patients could be asked to pay for items such as crutches, walking sticks and neck braces. Currently these items are free.

The proposal has drawn criticism from a number of organisations, including NHS England, the TUC and the British Medical Association.

Liz Sayce, chief executive of Disability Rights UK, said: "Charging for essential equipment is counter-productive and unfair and will also jeopardise independence by putting some people off getting essential equipment. And public funding is supposed legally to support proactive steps to achieve greater equality for disabled people. This would do the opposite."

For more on this story see http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/apr/16/nhs-charges-crutches-neck-braces-proposal