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Consultation on GF prescribing by Hertfordshire and Herts Valley CCGs

17 July 2017

East and North Hertfordshire clinical commissioning group (CCG) and Herts Valley CCG are proposing to stop the prescribing of gluten free food and are asking local people for their views.

Last year, Herts Valley CCG restricted the number of units and products available on prescription. East and North Hertfordshire CCG currently follow the national prescribing guidelines for prescribing of gluten free foods.

Coeliac UK communication with the CCGs

We are extremely concerned by the proposal and will be submitting a formal response in support of continuing access to gluten free food on prescription. Our arguments will focus on the importance of gluten free staples on prescription to support management and adherence to the gluten free diet in view of cost and availability issues. Research shows that gluten free staple foods are not readily available to purchase in budget supermarkets and convenience stores and that gluten free staple foods are 3-4 times more expensive than gluten containing equivalents. We will also be asking local healthcare professionals for their support.

Have your say

The consultation will run until 14 September 2017. You can engage through completing the online survey.

If you would like to request a hard copy of the consultation document or another format (eg large print or a different language) please call 01707 685140 or email communications@enhertsccg.nhs.uk.

The CCG is also holding public events - please click on the links below to register your attendance at any of the following events:

We would also encourage you to 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 proposed changes would affect you.

As part of our work in opposing prescription cuts, we are looking for people affected by these prescription cuts to act as case studies. This will enable us to give examples to the media of how this policy change would affect people with coeliac disease. To become a case study or to find out more about interview opportunities please call us on 0333 332 2033.

Department of Health national consultation on gluten free prescribing

You may have read in Crossed Grain magazine or on our website about the Department of Health consultation on the future of gluten free prescribing. This consultation is looking at three options for the future of gluten free prescribing across England:

  • Make no changes to current gluten free prescribing legislation 
  • Withdraw all gluten free prescriptions 
  • Only allow the prescribing of certain gluten free foods (eg limited to bread and flour)

We have responded to the national consultation and you can read our response here. We have also had a meeting with representatives from the Department of Health to fight to retain access to prescribing. The report on the consultation is not due to be published until the autumn and in the meantime we will be stepping up our lobbying of MPs on this issue.

We will be challenging East and North Hertfordshire CCG on their decision to review their local prescribing guidance while a national consultation is underway. We will also ask how they will be taking the results of the national consultation into account as part of their review.

We will provide updates as the situation progresses through direct mailings, Crossed Grain magazine and on our website.

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