politics

Menopause Bill: Women call for HRT to be made free in England ahead of crucial vote



At present, HRT prescriptions cost £9.35 per item in England on the NHS, but are free in Wales and Scotland.

HRT is a treatment to relieve symptoms of menopause by replacing the oestrogen and progesterone hormones that the body no longer produces.

The most common form of HRT medication is a daily tablet, but it can also be taken via applying a skin patch or gel medication to the skin or a small pellet under the skin.

With some required to take a combination of both progesterone and oestrogen, they must pay for separate charges. Others can be advised to take HRT for over five years or even longer, meaning the treatment can amount to hundreds or even thousands of pounds.

Campaigners say this can act as a financial barrier than can put some women off seeking treatment and “prices others out altogether”.

Supporting the Bill, the Ginsburg Women’s Health Board, an organisation campaigning to close the gender health gap, are calling on the Government to deliver a “more equal and effective healthcare system for women”.

Part of this would see HRT treatment exempt from NHS prescription charges to “ensure all women who require it are not unfairly financially penalised” for seeking treatment.

Mika Simmons, who is part of the Ginsburg Women’s Health Board’s #FreeHRT campaign, started taking HRT earlier this year.

Mika Simmons wants to see HRT prescription charges scrapped in England

/ Mika Simmons

Before taking the medication, Ms Simmons said she experienced a whole host of “weird symptoms” including feeling like ants were crawling under her skin and being easily irritated.



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