If you are diagnosed as requiring a gluten free diet, you should be able to get some basic gluten free staples on prescription here in the UK. These include: bread, flour, pasta, pizza bases, crackers and a few sweet biscuits. This isn’t the full range of goods available in the UK – there are more foods available in supermarkets, healthfood stores and online – but these can be expensive, and having gluten free food available on prescription does mean that gluten free food is available to all.
The list of what foodstuffs are available on prescription is maintained by the Prescription Pricing Authority, and it does change from time to time. Liga foods, and those from Mrs Leeper and Saravee seem to have been taken off the list recently. As you may know, Wellfoods was added to the list last year. In some other cases, individual items are removed from the list, possibly because the manufacturer has decided to stop making them. For example, until recently canned bread was still available on the prescribable list.
You can see the list at the PPA site, or here on the Free From site.
You will need to pay for prescribed goods in most situations – in my next post, we’ll look at free or low-cost prescriptions.
I’ve written a book summarising what we’ve learnt over 20 years of dealing with the gluten free diet, and it might be just what you’re looking for. It packs the lessons we’ve learned into what I hope is a helpful and straightforward guidebook. It’s available on Amazon, as a paperback or for your Kindle…
saiman ali says
I was diagnosed with coeliac’s disease about four years ago and until now I have been able to obtain gluten free foods such as bread, pasta and biscuits via prescription which I pay for by purchasing a yearly PPC. Recently my local G.P decided to stop the service altogether the reason being that another patent was abusing the system. Can this drastic measure be put into place by my G.P?
Hi saiman ali
This doesn’t sound right to me, but we’re just patients too, and don’t have any influence…
You could consider changing your GP, though you may find that the guidelines are coming from your local Primary Care Trust, which means all your local GPs offer the same level of service.
I strongly recommend that you contact Coeliac UK here: http://www.coeliac.org.uk/gluten-free-diet-lifestyle/food-on-prescription.
They are collecting issues with prescriptions, and will be able to advise you as to your rights and possible courses of action.
A final course of action might be to contact your MP, who also will have resources – and some influence – to advise you.
Please do come back and let us know how you get on with this – thanks!