Pharmacy Contraception Service


The Pharmacy Contraception Service enables community pharmacists to initiate oral contraception, via a Patient Group Direction (PGD), and to provide ongoing monitoring and supply of repeat oral contraception (OC).

The objectives of the service are to: 

  • Provide a model for community pharmacy teams to initiate provision of OC, and to continue the provision of OC supplies initiated in primary care (including general practice and pharmacies) or sexual health clinics and equivalent. Both initiation and ongoing supply will be undertaken using PGDs to support the review and supply process; and 
  • Establish an integrated pathway between existing services and community pharmacies that provides people with greater choice and access when considering continuing their current form of OC. 

For full details for the service, please visit the Community Pharmacy England website.


Service Description

The service requirements are included in the service specification and Patient Group Directions (PGDs), describes the requirements for provision of the service and they must be read and understood by all pharmacists providing the service. 

People will access the service by one of the following routes:

  • Identified as clinically suitable by the community pharmacist and accept the offer of the service.
  • Self-refer to a community pharmacy.
  • Referred by their general practice.
  • Referred from a sexual health clinic (or equivalent).
  • Referred from other NHS service providers, e.g., urgent treatment centres or NHS 111.


Note – When a person attends the pharmacy to collect an NHS repeat prescription for OC, the service can be highlighted to them to consider when they need their next supply.


Contractors must utilise an IT solution that meets the minimum digital requirements of the service (as specified within the Community Pharmacy Clinical Services Standard) and that includes an application programming interface (API) to facilitate transfer of data into the NHSBSA MYS portal to support the PCS.


Key Documents

Download the service specification and Patient Group Directions (PDF)

Download the Tier 1 (original) service specification and Patient Group Directions (PDF)

Download the service pathway for initiation (PDF)  

Download the service pathway for ongoing supply (PDF)  


VirtualOutcomes Training (free for all West Yorkshire pharmacy teams).

VirtualOutcomes has just released an updated e-Learning module for the NHS Pharmacy Contraception Service. This e-Learning has been updated to reflect the new changes and service specification from 1st December 2023.

This course is split into two modules.  One module is for pharmacists and the other is for the pharmacy team. The courses have been updated to reflect the new changes and service specification from 1st December 2023. More information can be found in the flyer below or on the Virtual Outcomes website here.


Guidance & Resources

Extended Pharmacy Contraception Service – A Guide to Registration


Last Updated: 27th December 2023