APPG SRH event examines solutions to improve access to LARC
Date: 11 Feb 2022
Type: All-Party Parliamentary Group on SRH
The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Sexual and Reproductive Health (APPG SRH) held an event on 8th February, focused on how to overcome barriers to Long-acting Reversible Contraceptives (LARC) provision and future-proof access for girls and women. The meeting was held in the context of the development of the Sexual and Reproductive Health Strategy, as a key opportunity to address long-standing issues in the commissioning and delivery of SRH and support increased access to all forms of contraception.
Over 150 participants from across the sexual and reproductive healthcare (SRH) policy, medical and advocacy communities joined the meeting, which was chaired by the APPG’s Co-Chair Baroness Barker and featured the following experts and healthcare professionals as panellists:
- Dr Sue Mann, National Medical Expert in Reproductive Health, the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities at the Department of Health and Social Care
- James Woolgar, Sexual Health Commissioning Lead at Liverpool City Council and Current Chair of English HIV and Sexual Health Commissioners’ Group
- Dr Stephanie Cook, LARC Implementation Lead at the SWAGGA Network and Women's Health Hubs Clinical Lead in Liverpool
Panellists focused on the need for contraceptive care to be designed around the needs of the individual, with the full range of options available – including LARC. They examined the different challenges in provision – including barriers to training and funding arrangements – but also examples of how care can be effectively delivered at a local level, such as the role of Women’s Health Hubs in joining up care.
In the context of access to LARC during COVID-19, panellists highlighted the importance of system recovery and resilience – including collaboration to ensure inter-practice referral and training in General Practice – and effective future planning, in improving provision for girls and women.
A key issue to emerge as part of discussions was the importance of national leadership to give contraception and wider SRH much-needed prioritisation at this level.
The event also covered the actions that the APPG is taking to advocate in Parliament on other issues in the SRH space, including calling for telemedicine in early medical abortion to be made permanent – further to the Government’s consultation closing in February 2021 – and supporting the establishment of a comprehensive abortion service in Northern Ireland.
You can read a summary of the event here.
If you have any questions about this event or the work of the APPG SRH please get in contact via firstname.lastname@example.org.