Give views on gluten-free food being available on prescription

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A CONSULTATION on gluten-free foods being available on prescription has almost closed.

The NHS is looking for views until June 22 on whether people with coeliac disease should get free flour, bread and pasta.

As previously reported in The News, groups supporting people with the allergy said the changes could have an impact on families who cannot afford the gluten-free option.

Speaking at the time Kate Dowell, the organiser for the south east Hampshire coeliac group based in Portsmouth, said the people who would be affected by the changes are low income families.

She said staples like bread and flour should remain on prescription.

Charity Coeliac UK yesterday published its response to the Department of Health’s consultation on the availability of gluten-free foods on prescription.

It has welcomed the consultation but said it is essential clinicians retain the option of providing support to vulnerable patients trying to maintain their life-long gluten-free diet with an agreed range of gluten-free staple foods on prescription.

Chief executive Sarah Sleet said: ‘There is an economic case for retaining access to gluten free prescribing in primary care.

‘What’s more, the removal of access to gluten-free core staples on prescription has a disproportionate impact on the most vulnerable.’

The NHS England consultation is open until midday on June 22. Visit gov.uk/government/consultations/availability-of-gluten-free-foods-on-nhs-prescription.