Changes to gluten free prescribing in Lincolnshire
8 February 2017
The CCGs in Lincolnshire have made the decision to continue following the national prescribing guidelines for the number of units each month, but have restricted the products available to bread, bread mixes and flour.
The National Picture
You may be aware that this is a situation that is also affecting people in other parts of England. Only around 50% of CCGs currently follow the National Prescribing Guidelines, around a third continue to prescribe but have restrictions in place and the remaining CCGs have removed access to gluten free food on prescription. We are also aware that a significant number of CCGs (7%) are reviewing their gluten free prescribing policy.
Policy change in Lincolnshire
Coeliac UK has responded with a number of letters highlighting the importance of gluten free staples on prescription in light of the higher cost and variable availability of gluten free foods. We have also written to the CCGs in light of the new NICE quality standard on coeliac disease which was published in October.
While the CCGs have made this decision, we would like to stress that the final decision about what to prescribe lies with your GP. We would therefore encourage you to have a discussion with your GP about gluten free food on prescription if you are concerned about the impact this may have on you.
Have your say
If you would like to oppose the prescription cuts, there are several things that you can do:
- Contact the local Healthwatch by emailing (firstname.lastname@example.org), calling on 01205 820 892 or writing to Healthwatch Lincolnshire, Unit 12, 1-2 North End, Swineshead, Lincolnshire, PE20 3LR
- Contact your CCG, if you don’t know which CCG area you live in you can check on our website or you can ask us by calling on 0333 332 2033
- Contact Lincolnshire East CCG by emailing (email@example.com), calling on 0845 071 0960 or writing to Lincolnshire East CCG, Corporate Office, Cross O’Cliff Court, Bracebridge Heath, Lincoln, LN4 2HN
- Contact Lincolnshire West CCG by emailing using the contact form on their website or calling on 01522 513355 or writing to Lincolnshire West CCG, Cross O'Cliff, Bracebridge Heath, Lincoln, LN4 2HN
- Contact South Lincolnshire CCG by emailing (office@southlincolnshireCCG.nhs.uk), calling on 01522 573939 or writing to South Lincolnshire CCG, Eventus, Sunderland Road, Northfields Industrial Estate, Market Deeping, Peterborough, PE6 8FD
- Contact South West Lincolnshire CCG by emailing (firstname.lastname@example.org), calling on 01476 406578 or writing to South West Lincolnshire CCG, South Kesteven District Council Offices, St Peter’s Hill, Grantham, NG31 6PZ
- Write to your local MP, we have a sample letter on our website which you can use, or please feel free to write your own letter explaining how the changes will affect you
- Speak with your local GP about your individual case
- Watch out for more information on next campaign steps particularly on our website
Although we are disappointed that the CCGs have introduced a policy which moves away from National Prescribing Guidelines, we are pleased to see that the CCGs have not opted to completely remove gluten free food on prescription, which was the initial proposal.