Lloydspharmacy has revealed that a large number of young women who rely on the contraceptive pill to prevent unwanted pregnancies have risked unprotected sex simply because they were unable to get a repeat prescription.
New research by Lloydspharmacy shows that as many as one in four (25%) women aged between 18 and 24 years who take the pill admit to having sex without contraception just because they ran out.
According to Lloydspharmacy 64 per cent of women aged between 18 and 24 take the pill, amounting to around 1.6 million people. But one in four of those - around 426,000 young women - are taking huge risks by having sexual intercourse between pill prescriptions.
Lloydspharmacy warns that young women in particular find it difficult to make an appointment with their GP to get repeat prescriptions. Its research shows that one in ten young women always find it hard to get a convenient appointment from their doctor in order to get a repeat prescription of the contraceptive pill. And more than one in three (40%) say they have run out of the pill because they did not have time or simply forgot to collect their prescription.
Experts at Lloydspharmacy are particularly concerned that such a high proportion of young women who do not collect their repeat prescription then go on to have sex without protection anyway.
Chris Frost, Head of Medicines at Lloydspharmacy, commented: "This is a worrying statistic. It's interesting to see just how many young women will take such a huge risk because they have either forgotten to pick up a repeat prescription or have not had time to go to the doctors because of work or child pressures."
The research comes as Lloydspharmacy launches an online service for women to have an online consultation and obtain prescriptions for the contraceptive pill via its online doctor.
The service has been designed for women who have been taking the pill for some time and who require repeat prescriptions for the same pill they have been taking for a year or more.
Chris Frost added: "This online pharmacy service supplied by Lloydspharmacy.com, has been designed to provide an easy way for women to obtain a repeat prescription of the contraceptive pill without having to make an appointment at the doctors."
Notes to Editors:
Consumer research was conducted by YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 1956 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 2nd - 4th December 2008. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of online adults (aged 18+).
Lloydspharmacy has around 1,700 pharmacies across the UK. These are based predominantly in community and health centre locations. The company employs over 15,000 staff and dispenses more than 133 million prescription items annually.
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