I found a letter last night – I was sorting through some mail – from the NHS, which told me that I needed to renew my medical exemption certificate. (Having such a certificate means my prescriptions are redeemable at no further cost to me – I don’t use the word “free” because, of course, I have already paid thousands in taxes.)
But it is interesting. Once upon a time, people either got these subsidised prescriptions or they didn’t. If they tried to get subsidised prescriptions without entitlement, then presumably they are guilty of fraud. But you bring this certificate into the equation, and it becomes central. So not having the certificate becomes the salient point, not someone’s entitlement to the exemption.
I noticed the same thing several years ago, when the photocard portion of my driving license arbitrarily expired – I was still entitled to drive afterwards.
Another weird one was that they told me that I had to fill out a paper form, but I searched and couldn’t find this form online. My particular disability means that I can’t use my writing hand any more, so it is far easier to type something than it is to write. The reason it is “weird” is because, especially with a medical exemption certificate, you’d think it would attract a disproportionate number of disabled applicants. You’d think they, of all people, would have an eye on accessibility.