22 July 2017
Pharmacy and care for customers are at the heart of everything we do and as such we are truly sorry that our poor choice of words in describing our position on Emergency Hormonal Contraception (EHC) has caused offence and misunderstanding and we sincerely apologise. We firmly believe in the right of all women to access the EHC service with ease and convenience, and have long been at the forefront of increasing accessibility of contraception for women.
The provision of EHC requires a regulated mandatory consultation to protect women’s health and is a professional healthcare service provided by highly trained pharmacists. As a leading pharmacy, we will not compromise or undervalue this professional service. The consultation with the pharmacist is necessary to understand the patient’s individual circumstances and ensure we provide an appropriate, safe and effective medicine for her.
The pricing of EHC is determined by the cost of the medicine and the cost of the pharmacy consultation. We are committed to looking at the sourcing of less expensive EHC medicines, for example generics, to enable us to continue to make a privately funded EHC service even more accessible in the future. In addition the NHS EHC service where it is locally commissioned, is provided for free in over 1,700 of our pharmacies, and we continue to urge the NHS to extend this free service more widely.