North Walsham surgery champions health initiative

Women across the county are to have improved access to contraceptive implants, thanks to an initiative being championed by a north Norfolk surgery.

Women across the county are to have better access to contraceptive implants thanks to an initiative being championed by a north Norfolk surgery.

The long-acting reversible implant will be available at GP surgeries across Norfolk from today.

The initiative is being championed by Vicki Bowman, a GP at the Paston Surgery at North Walsham.

The contraceptive contains etonogestrel, a synthetic form of the female sex hormone, progesterone, to prevent pregnancy. It will provide protection for up to three years if left in place but can be removed at any time.

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Julie Hughes, NHS Norfolk's sexual health commissioning manager, said: "It will be available for all surgeries that want to provide it.

"Women across the county will have access to the implant either through their own GP surgery or one nearby."

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She added: "Unlike the contraceptive pill, the effectiveness of the implant does not depend on other factors. For example, it will still be effective if you have a stomach upset.

"The implant is also particularly beneficial for younger women, who may not always remember to take the contraceptive pill."

Earlier this year, 40 GP practices and

more than 70 pharmacies signed up

to a new scheme to offer an enhanced

range of services such as free chlamydia

and pregnancy testing and free contraceptives.

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