Drugs Payment Scheme card

Under the Drugs Payment Scheme (DPS) an individual or family will pay no more than €80 each calendar month for:

  • approved prescribed drugs and medicines
  • rental costs for a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine
  • rental costs for oxygen

If you don’t have a medical card and you pay more than €80 a month for any of these, you should apply.

Who can apply

Anyone who is ‘ordinarily resident’ in the Republic of Ireland can apply. ‘Ordinarily resident’ means that you are living here and intend to live here for at least one year.

There is no means test for a DPS card.

Family applications

A family is an adult, their spouse or partner and any dependents.

You can include any family member, regardless of age, who can't fully maintain themselves and has:

  • a physical disability
  • an intellectual disability
  • an illness

You will need to include a medical report for the applicants who cannot maintain themselves.

Applying if you have children in full-time education

If you are applying as a family, you may have dependent children aged 18 to 23 in full-time education. If so, you may want to add them to your card.

To do this:

  1. Complete section 2 of the Drugs Payment Scheme application form
  2. Have it signed and stamped by the educational institute
  3. Include it in your application

Check the status of your application

You can use your reference number to check the status of your application online.

When you apply online, you get a reference number at the end of the application process.

When you apply by post and give a mobile number, we send a reference number by text. If you don't give a mobile number, we send a reference number by post.

How long cards are valid for

Your card will have a ‘Valid to’ date on it. You can also use our online eligibility status check to see if your card is still valid.

If your card has expired you will need to apply again.

Lost card or change of details

Contact us if your:

  • card is lost or stolen
  • contact details change

Page last reviewed: 1 November 2018
Next review due: 1 November 2021