Hundreds of thousands of women are set to benefit from cheaper Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) as the Government announces a new pre-payment programme.
From the 1st of April, those who are prescribed HRT will be able to use a prescription pre-payment certificate (PPC) that allows women to access a year’s worth of treatment for less than £20.
The PPC’s introduction represents the Government delivering on one of the year one priorities set out in the Women’s Health Strategy for England that was published last summer.
Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Steve Barclay, said: “This new certificate will make HRT more accessible than ever before – helping around 400,000 women save hundreds of pounds a year. This is another step in our drive to improve support for millions of women experiencing the menopause, delivering on our Women’s Health Strategy.”
Initially valid for 12 months, the new certificate can be used for a variety of different items and an unlimited amount of times, with women able to obtain a PPC via the NHS Business Service Authority or in-person at eligible pharmacies.
The move comes as the latest figures suggest that around 15% of women aged 45 to 64 in England are prescribed HRT – a significant increase from the previous two years which saw the level at approximately 11%.
Minister for Women, Maria Caufield, added: “Around three quarters of women will experience menopause symptoms, with a quarter experiencing severe symptoms – which can seriously impact their quality of life. Reducing the cost of HRT is a huge moment for improving women’s health in this country, and I am proud to be announcing this momentous step forward.
“In our Women’s Health Strategy, we made menopause a top priority – by making HRT more accessible, we’re delivering on our commitment to women.”