Scottish Community Pharmacies to Provide 'Bridging Contraception'

Pavankumar Kamat

November 22, 2021

Women in Scotland can now get a temporary 3-month supply of the progestogen-only contraceptive, commonly known as the mini pill, through community pharmacies. This concept termed as 'bridging contraception' will be accessible to females aged 13-55 years, where clinically appropriate.

Pharmacies were earlier allowed to only dispense emergency contraceptives and were required to direct women seeking longer term contraception to their GP practice. The new decision will not only expand access to contraception, but also bridge the gap between emergency contraception and longer-term contraception choices for women.

Following a successful pilot carried out across Lothian and Tayside pharmacies, the programme has now been introduced on a national scale.

Scotland's Minister for Public Health and Women’s Health, Maree Todd, said: "We want Scotland to be a world leader when it comes to women’s health. The introduction of this service will increase the choice for women in the ways in which they can access contraception."

Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Professor Nicola Steedman, added: "Providing a temporary supply of the progestogen-only pill within pharmacies will give women more choice over their reproductive health therefore, reducing the risk of unplanned pregnancy."

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