Free contraception scheme expands to include women aged 31

The Minister for Health has today announced the expansion of the free contraception scheme to include women aged 31, as previously announced in Budget 2024.

The free contraception scheme is open to women, girls and other people identifying as transgender or non-binary, who are ordinarily resident in Ireland and for whom prescription contraception is deemed suitable by their doctors.

The scheme was launched in September 2022, initially for those aged 17 to 25 and expanded to include 26 to 30 year olds in 2023.
The scheme covers the cost of consultations with GPs, family planning, student health and primary care centres, and prescription for contraceptive options available on the HSE re-imbursement list.

These options include injections, implants and IUDs (both hormonal and copper).

The scheme also includes emergency contraception in addition to the oral contraceptive pill, patch and ring.

Fittings, removals, injections and checks are also free of charge under the scheme.

Almost 2,400 GPs, primary care, family planning and student health centres and other related community medical facilities and 2,050 community pharmacies have signed up to provide services under the scheme to date.

Approximately €41.5 million is allocated to support the scheme in 2024.