East Devon menopause services 'not good enough' according to MP

Simon Jupp was elected as Member of Parliament for East Devon at the 2019 general election.
Simon Jupp was elected as Member of Parliament for East Devon at the 2019 general election. Credit: Gareth Williams

Issues surrounding the availability and proximity of services in East Devon for people going through the menopause have been highlighted by East Devon MP Simon Jupp.

The conservative backbencher raised his concerns at Prime Minister’s Questions in the House of Commons.

He said: "Women in East Devon currently face a 120-mile round trip to get to the nearest specialist menopause clinic. It is not good enough, is it? 

"Will my right honourable friend outline what steps the government is taking to improve access to menopause services in Devon and the South West?"

The Prime Minister thanked Mr Jupp “for raising this very important campaign.”

He added: "We are committed to improving menopause care so that all women can have access to the support that they need to manage the symptoms.

"Menopause will be a priority in our women’s health strategy and we are committed to establishing a UK-wide menopause taskforce."

After raising the issue, all-parliamentary group on menopause, Menopause APPG responded in a tweet.

It read: "Delighted to hear @simonjamesjupp raising a question around the need for improved Menopause services around East Devon and the South West."The need for improved Menopause services across the country is a key part of the #MenopauseRevolution we are working to move forward."

Jupp brought the issue to the commons after noting that an Exmouth constituent, Jinty Sheerin has launched a campaign for a dedicated menopause clinic in Devon. 

Sheerin is a yoga practitioner who works in menopause yoga, and is just one campaigner in the area who wants to see more menopause services opened in around the South West and Devon in particular.

She said: "There's a lack of understanding and awareness everywhere.

Jinty believes there's a lack of understanding and awareness about what menopause is and where to get help for it Credit: ITV West Country

"The problem for most women is they get into their 40s and have no clue that menopause might be around the corner.

"They get these symptoms and don't know who to go to, what to do about it, and don't go to the doctor because they don't necessarily link it to perimenopause.

"We're all going to go through it and the more we talk about it, the more we normalise it.

"We are campaigning for a menopause clinic in Devon because I think it's about 157,000 women in Devon who are of menopausal age.

"A lot of them will need specialist care and if they can get at least get help, it might prevent them from going on to need further specialist care."