§ Mr. Jon Owen Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security (1) what estimate his Department has made of the amount of money which will be reclaimed under the new rules for prescription charges in respect of men aged between 60 and 65; 
(2) how many pensioners have claimed refunds of prescription charges under the new rules affecting men aged between 60 and 65 years. 676W
§ Mrs. Ewing
To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what total repayments have been made by the prescription claims processing unit to men aged 60 to 64 years since 20 October 1995; 
(2) what percentage of applications received by the prescription claims processing unit have been processed to the latest available date; 
(3) how many applications for refunds of NHS prescriptions charges have been lodged by men aged 60 to 64 years since 20 July 1995; and what percentage of those eligible this represents. 
§ Mr. Malone
We do not hold figures on the number of men aged 60 to 65 who have paid prescription charges prior to the European Court of Justice ruling. Following our invitation to register a claim we have issued over 187,000 claim forms to men in the United Kingdom. At the close of business on 23 February 132,000—70 per cent.—had been returned.
To date the prescription claims processing unit has authorised payments totalling £2.6 million to 83,000 —63 per cent.—men. At this stage it is not possible to forecast accurately the total cost of likely refunds but they are not expected to exceed £6 million. This does not include the cost of prepayment certificates refunded locally by family health services authorities. Administration costs will be additional.