On 21st February, Members of Parliament discussed coeliac disease for half an hour. Not bad, given the amount of stuff they have to discuss.

The focus of the discussion was on the need to improve diagnosis, but also on the importance of prescriptions as a source of gluten free food for people with coeliac disease. As you may know, Northamptonshire Primary Care Trust is moving towards abandoning provision of basic gluten free foodstuffs on prescription.

It doesn’t read like a debate, because everyone seemed to be in agreement – there seem to be an astonishing number of MPs with coeliac disease in the family! I suppose with a rate of 1 in 100 people in the UK being coeliac, this shouldn’t be a surprise really.

The Early Day Motion (276) now has 124 signatures – if your MP hasn’t signed, please urge them to sign it in order to get more discussion of coeliac disease and prescriptions.

The EDM reads:

That this House is concerned that certain primary care trusts (PCTs) are refusing to prescribe, or are restricting the prescription of, gluten-free foods to people diagnosed with coeliac disease; condemns such action, which can only be cost-driven and not care-driven; and calls upon offending PCTs to ensure that all diagnosed sufferers of coeliac disease continue to receive on prescription all the basic staple foods, such as bread, flour, bread mixes, pasta and pizza bases, and other gluten-free foods where there is a clinical need.