Special baby milk too costly

Nicola Coulton who is upset at not getting her lactose free formula milk on prescription to feed her nine-week-old baby, Lexi.

Nicola Coulton who is upset at not getting her lactose free formula milk on prescription to feed her nine-week-old baby, Lexi.

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A mum says she is struggling to afford to feed her baby because GPs have stopped prescribing special baby milk.

Nicola Coulton’s baby daughter Lexie is lactose intolerant and has to have SMA lactose free formula.

But Nicola is now having to pay £30 to £40 a week for the milk. which is sometimes difficult to get hold of.

Nicola, of Beaumont Place, Lancaster, who also has a son Spencer, age seven, said: “It was available on prescription which was free for under 16s, but now GPs have stopped prescribing it to save money.

“Half size tins cost £5 to £7 and one lasts me two days as she needs feeding every two hours.

“A normal sized tin costs £8.95.

“It’s disgusting. It’s her only source of food and I am being forced to pay such a lot of money for it.

“I dont have a problem with buying milk but when it is milk for a medical condition or need then surely I should not have to pay £30 plus a week on milk to feed my baby.

“I have also have been told that the price is going to increase by nearly double .

“I would like to know who can afford to pay that amount of money in these hard times.

“I do work and so does my partner so dont get any benefits and I still can’t afford to pay that amount.”

Nicola says she also finds it hard to find the milk and as it has to be ordered in, has to stockpile the milk to make sure she has enough in.

“Babies are expensive enough but when they are under medical supervision its now more expensive.

“When she is six months old she will start eating solid food but until that time, we won’t know what else she may be intolerant to.

“There isn’t a hungry version of the milk, which means she’s always hungry.”

Dr Kamlesh Sidhu, Prescribing Lead for Lancashire North CCG said: “For many years infant formula milks have been prescribed when not clinically indicated and for much longer than is medically necessary. The new guidance clarifies which milks should be prescribed for which condition and for how long.

“Lactose intolerance is a temporary problem and children who require lactose free milks will be reintroduced to normal milk formula once their condition has settled, usually after 4-12 weeks.

“Lactose free milks are available from a range of retailers including large supermarket pharmacies at competitive prices.”