Department of Health consultation on gluten free prescriptions launched
20 April 2017
We have now received the official consultation regarding the future of gluten free prescribing and we will be talking to all of our stakeholders before we respond comprehensively to the consultation. Coeliac UK is looking forward to the opportunity to engage with the NHS in the consultation process, having already written to the chief executive of NHS England, Simon Stevens, to request a meeting to make sure that the needs of patients with coeliac disease are realised and that an equitable solution is found.
We will be trying to persuade the NHS to consider alternatives that will deliver cost savings, while providing support for patients with coeliac disease and particularly the most vulnerable, to support dietary adherence and reduce the risk of long term complications which could cost the NHS more in the long run.
The official announcement today sets out three options as part of the consultation:
- option 1- make no changes: Make no changes to the National Health Service
- option 2- end prescribing of gluten free foods in primary care
- option 3- restrict prescribing of gluten free foods: to only allow the prescribing of certain gluten free foods (eg bread and flour) in primary care.
The deadline to respond is 22 June which gives us time to make our case again. You can also respond to the consultation at www.gov.uk/government/consultations/availability-of-gluten-free-foods-on-nhs-prescription
We will keep members and supporters updated and, in the meantime, we ask everyone to write to their MP and ask them to support the Early Day Motion put forward by MP Kevan Jones, in support of gluten free prescribing.
If you’re not sure who your MP is, just visit the website below and enter your postcode. The site will also allow you to generate an email.
In your email to your MP, remember to include:
• that you are writing to ask that they sign the Early Day Motion 1123 on gluten free prescriptions
• why you think access to gluten free food on prescription is important, and the impact that removal of this service would have on you
• your personal details (name, address and email)
Please note that Easter Parliament recess runs from 30 March to 18 April 2017.
For more information about EDMs, including who will not sign them please see: www.parliament.uk/about/how/business/edms