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NHS in England - help with health costs


Although treatment on the NHS is free at the point of delivery, there may still be some costs (for example, your journey to hospital). However, much or all of the cost can be reclaimed, which should ease any added stress. The following pages explain in full detail how to claim the money to which you are entitled. 

NHS Low Income Scheme

If you have a low income, you may be able to get help with NHS costs through the NHS Low Income Scheme (LIS).

Universal Credit

On November 1 2015 the arrangements about who is entitled to help with health costs changed. If you receive Universal Credit ensure you are aware of the new arrangements as you may no longer be entitled to support.

Help with dental costs

Dental charges depend on the treatment you need to keep your mouth, teeth and gums healthy. Find out what you are entitled to and how to get help with NHS dental charges.

Eye care entitlements

Find out if you are entitled to free NHS sight tests or optical vouchers. The section also provides additional information about the current NHS voucher values.

Help with prescription costs

Find out if you are entitled to free prescriptions or how to get help with the charges such as through a PPC (prescription prepayment certificate).

Help with travel costs

Find out if and when you can claim refunds under the Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme for travelling to hospital or other NHS premisses.

Help for wigs and fabric supports

Wigs are available from the NHS but patients will be charged for them unless they qualify for help with charges. Find out if you are eligible for support.

Page last reviewed: 14/02/2017

Next review due: 14/02/2020

Important numbers

Phone 0300 330 1348 for the dental services help line

Phone 0300 330 1343 for the Low Income Scheme help line

Phone 0300 330 1341 for queries about medical exemption certificates.

Phone 0300 330 1341 for queries about PPCs.

Phone 0300 330 1349 for the prescription services help line

Phone 0300 330 1347 for queries about tax credit certificates

Phone 0300 123 0849 to order a paper copy of the HC12, HC5 and HC1 (SC) forms

For all other queries call 0300 330 1343

Paying NHS charges

Read about rules on exemptions, claiming refunds, and what happens if you're caught claiming refunds dishonestly

Visiting or moving to England?

This section provides a basic overview of how to access NHS services in the country