Gluten free food on prescription in Scotland

I live in Scotland

If you have a confirmed diagnosis of coeliac disease, you can access staple gluten free foods on prescription through the Scottish Gluten Free Food Service. This is an NHS service that allows you to manage your gluten-free food on prescription via your pharmacist.

Once diagnosed, your GP will register you with the Gluten Free Food Service. They will explain the number of units you are entitled to each month and will provide you with an order form to give to a pharmacy. You can then nominate a pharmacy of your choice who will set up and dispense your gluten free prescription.

Each month you will need to complete a new order form with your selection for that month. This gives you the flexibility to change or add to your order regularly.

Do I have to pay for a gluten free prescription? 

All prescriptions are free in Scotland so you won't pay for your gluten free food on prescription.

Feedback from those using the Gluten Free Food Service has identified several benefits:

  • Access to a reliable monthly supply of safe, staple gluten free foods.
  • More control over how you manage your gluten free diet.
  • Able to make changes to your monthly order without the need for a GP appointment.
  • Access to an annual health check with your local pharmacist
  • Regular support and advice from your local pharmacy team.

Read more information about the Gluten Free Food Service at www.nhsinform.scot

Gluten free alternatives to everyday staple foods which are essential to a healthy balanced diet are available on prescription via the Gluten Free Food Service.

Gluten free food on prescription in Scotland

Flour Mixes

All-purpose flour substitutes and part baked in white and fibre – for all your baking needs

Pizza Bases & Pasta

Part baked pizza base and a selection of white and fibre pasta shapes

Breakfast Cereals

A selection of fortified breakfast cereals and ‘pure’ oats

Crackers & Biscuits

Savoury biscuits and crispbread; plain sweet biscuits (on prescribed in exceptional circumstances)

Bread

available in white and fibre and part baked

A monthly allowance of gluten free foods has been suggested by Coeliac UK and healthcare professionals. This is measured in units and differs on age, gender and where you live.

AGE GROUP Number of units
Child 1 - 3 years 10
Child 4 - 6 years 11
Child 7 - 10 years 13
Child 11 - 14 years 15
Child 15 - 18 years 18
Male 19 - 59 years 18
Male 60 - 74 years 16
Male 75+ years 14
Female 19 - 59 years 14
Female 75+ years 12
3rd trimester pregnancy Add 1 unit
Breastfeeding Add 4 units

Ref: Gluten-Free foods – a revised guide 2019

You can make up your monthly allowance with different foods of your choice.

1 unit

1 (400g) loaf of bread /
1 (5x85g) pack of rolls

1 (250g) pack of
pasta

1 (200g) pack of
crispbread/crackers

1.5 unit

1 (300g - 500g) pack of
breakfast cereal

1 (500g) pack of
Pure Oats

2 units

1 (500g) pack of all-purpose mix

1 (250g) pack of
pasta

  1. Make an appointment with your GP

    Your GP or dietitian will ask you to complete a Patient Registration Form to register for the Gluten Free Food Service. They will ask you to nominate a local community pharmacy who will dispense your prescription.

  2. Your monthly allowance

    Your GP or dietitian will explain how many units of food you are entitled to each month.

    Top tips:

    Juvela offers newly diagnosed coeliacs a free starter pack; this allows you the opportunity to try a selection of gluten free foods from the range before deciding which ones you would like on prescription. Please give us a call or apply online for a pack.

    It may help to estimate how much gluten free food you would use in a typical month, eg how many slices of bread or bowls of porridge. Remember to include the flour you might use in cooking and baking.

  3. Choose your foods

    Your GP or dietitian will give you an order form and will provide you with a list of gluten free foods available from your local Health Board.

    Top tip:

    Calculate the number of units and check this is in line with your monthly allowance.

  4. Next Steps

    Pass your completed order form to your nominated pharmacy; they will let you know when your order is ready for collection.

    Each month, you will need to complete a new order form with your selection for that month. This allows you the flexibility to change or add to your order.

    Top tip:

    Fresh bread has set ordering and delivery days, which your pharmacy should be familiar with. For further information, have a look at the fresh bread section on our website.

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