Public invited to have their say about gluten-free food on prescription

People are invited to come along to the first of three public drop-in sessions about proposed changes to the prescribing of gluten-free foods for patients with coeliac disease in Bradford.

The local NHS is asking for people’s help to decide the future of gluten-free food on prescription.

The first session – where people can find out more about the proposals and ask questions - is on Tuesday 9 August, from 3pm to 4.30pm, at Windhill Community Centre, Church Street, Shipley, BD18 2NR. Everyone is welcome to attend, whether they live with coeliac disease or not.

Facebook_glutenfree_main

For more than 30 years, the NHS has prescribed gluten-free foods like bread, flour, cereal and pasta for people with coeliac disease. This policy was created at a time when gluten-free foods were not as readily available as they are today. In recent years, the range of gluten-free products has increased dramatically, with most supermarkets now stocking a wide range of these items.

However, the NHS is still spending £25m a year to provide gluten-free products on prescription. In Bradford, the total annual spend is around £320,000. With an increasing demand for services, coupled with financial constraints, the NHS must look at all the products and services and make decisions about what services to expand and what to reduce.

As a result, NHS Bradford City and NHS Bradford Districts CCGs are looking at a range of options, including no longer providing gluten-free foods on a prescription basis.

They are reviewing the gluten-free policy as part of an overall NHS programme known as QIPP – quality, innovation, productivity and prevention – which is all about making sure that each pound spent brings maximum benefit and quality of care to patients.

People can give their views on the proposals in a number of ways:

  • fill in the online survey here, or send comments to: Gluten-free consultation, Freepost RTEK-UHKG-UBEK, Douglas Mill, Bowling Old Lane, Bradford, BD5 7JR 
  • email: consultation@bradford.nhs.uk
  • attend further drop-in sessions on the following dates:
    • Tuesday 23 August, 6.30pm to 8pm, at Frizinghall Community Centre, Midland Road, Bradford, BD9 4HX,
    • Wednesday 7 September, 3pm to 4.30pm, at Park Lane Centre, Bradford, BD5 0LN.

The deadline for responses is 30 September 2016.