Progesterone-only contraceptive can be bought from pharmacies for the first time

Since 1988 the mini pill, or progestogen-only pill, has only been available with a prescription. After numerous parliamentary reports, studies and public consultations – that’s about to change…


Last month, the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency) announced that ­two forms of progestogen-only pills (POP) will become available to buy from pharmacies.


Previously, women could only access contraceptive pills with a prescription from their doctor. The reclassification of the POPs means that barriers to birth control are reduced and women of childbearing age will have greater control over unwanted pregnancies.


Lovima 75 microgram film-coated tablets and Hana 75 microgram film-coated tablets will both become available to purchase after a consultation with a pharmacist. As healthcare professionals, pharmacists are as equally placed as GPs to provide information and advice to women seeking contraception.


The two oral contraceptives contain desogestrel - the most prescribed POP - and are more than 99% effective at preventing pregnancy if taken correctly. 


This change comes after an inquiry by the all-party parliamentary group on sexual and reproductive health (APPG SRH) in 2020.