Home Lifestyle Health Calls for free hormone replacement therapy ‘to close health gender divide’

Calls for free hormone replacement therapy ‘to close health gender divide’


The drugs top up levels of hormones oestrogen and progestogen, and ease symptoms including hot flushes, night sweats and mood swings. They are subject to the prescription fee of £9.35 per item in England.

The Ginsburg Women’s Health Board yesterday launched the #Free-HRT campaign, joining calls for the charges to be axed.

The campaign group, whose aim is to help close the gender gap in UK healthcare, said women who require the treatment should not be financially penalised.

Its co-founder Nimco Ali, who is a close friend of Boris Johnson’s wife Carrie, said: “The menopause is a reality for women and not a choice.

“It is medical misogyny to exclude HRT from prescriptions that are free.”

The medication is already free in Wales and Scotland.

Dr Geeta Nargund, a consultant gynaecologist and co-founder of the group, said following suit in England would improve women’s quality of life and benefit society and families.

She said: “I’ve met countless women suffering not just with menopause symptoms but also the difficulty of how to pay for HRT.

“The Pill and pregnancy services are already rightfully provided to women free of charge, and there is no reason that the menopause should be any different  this is a case of basic women’s health rights.”

Actress Amanda Abbington, 47, who played Mary Watson in the BBC’s Sherlock series, is also supporting the campaign.

She said: “Thankfully, birth control and the morning-after pill are free to women on the NHS. Now, we need to make sure that HRT is also made free.”

“In June, Welsh Labour MP Carolyn Harris introduced a Private Members’ Bill in Parliament which aims to scrap the fees for HRT products in England.

She said: “This brilliant initiative from the Ginsburg Women’s Health Board is another great step towards achieving it.”

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