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Fragmentation and access to services

All women need to have easy access to routine healthcare services.

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However, we know that many women are struggling to access crucial services due to fragmentation in the way they are designed and delivered.

This chapter looks at the consequences of this fragmented approach. This includes an increase in the number of unplanned pregnancies, a rise in requests for abortion and late diagnoses of cervical cancer.

We consider the importance of easier access to basic women’s health services, including contraception, screening, abortion and fertility care.

Key recommendations


Mandated co-commissioning of SRH services across the UK.

One-stop clinics

Development of women’s health one-stop clinics in local community hubs.

Budget increases

Increase public health and sexual health budgets.

Progestogen-only contraceptives

Over-the-counter provision of progestogen-only oral contraceptives.

Emergency contraception

Provide easier access to emergency hormonal contraception.

Cervical screening

Increase uptake in cervical screening by ending fragmentation and harnessing technologies.

Abortion care

All women should be able to access abortion care easily and without fear of penalties or harassment.

IVF treatment

End post-code lotteries in IVF treatment and offer all eligible women 3 full cycles of IVF.

GP appointments

Appointment times at GP services should increase to 15 minutes.

Read more about these key recommendations, or download the chapter and full report below.


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Download the chapter: Fragmentation and access to services (PDF)

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Download the full report: Better for women (PDF 5.6mb)


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