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National Statistics

Sexual and Reproductive Health Services (Contraception), England, 2018/19 [NS]

This is part of

National statistics
Publication Date:
Geographic Coverage:
Date Range:
01 Apr 2018 to 31 Mar 2019

Part 5: Prescriptions for contraceptives dispensed in the community

Data for items dispensed in the community are sourced from the prescribing team at NHS Digital. The system used is the Prescription Cost Analysis (PCA) system, supplied by the Prescription Services Division of the NHS Business Services Authority (NHS BSA) and is based on the full analysis of all prescriptions dispensed in the community.

Prescriptions written by GPs and non-medical prescribers (nurses, pharmacists etc.) in England represent the vast majority of prescriptions included. Prescriptions written by dentists and hospital doctors are also included provided they were dispensed in the community. Also included are prescriptions written in Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man but dispensed in England. The data do not cover items dispensed in hospital or on private prescriptions.

The majority of items provided by SRH services would not be captured in this prescribing data, though there is likely to be a small amount of overlap where the prescription item is unavailable directly from the service.

Prescribing data is collected on a different basis to SRHAD and so the datasets cannot generally be combined.  It represents a count of items prescribed, unlike the activity based nature of SRHAD.


Prescriptions for contraceptives dispensed at other locations in the community

Long Acting Reversible Contraceptives (LARCs) by year

There were 1.24 million prescriptions dispensed in the community for LARCs in 2018. This is similar to recent years, but 9% higher than in 2008 (1.15 million).

Prescriptions for Long Acting Reversible Contraceptives (LARCs)  dispensed at other locations in the community, by year


User dependant contraceptives by year

In 2018, there were 6.94 million prescriptions dispensed in the community for user dependant contraceptives, a fall of 2% on 2017 (7.05 million). This continues a gradual long term decline; there has been a fall of 7% since 2008 when 7.45 million prescriptions were provided.

Prescriptions for User dependant contraceptives   dispensed at other locations in the community, by year


For more data relating to this section:

Last edited: 23 August 2019 9:51 am