How to apply
You need to fill in an HC1 form and post it back to us.
Where to get an HC1
If you live in:
- England - print an HC1 form or you can order a form to be sent to you
- Scotland - print an HC1 form or get a paper copy from job centres, GP surgeries, pharmacies and Citizens Advice centres
- Wales - call 0845 603 1108 (select the option for health publications) to get a copy sent to you or job centres, NHS hospitals, dentists and opticians might stock copies of the HC1 too
If you need any help making your claim, please call us on 0300 330 1343.
Renew your certificate
To renew your certificate, you need to re-apply using an HC1 form.
What happens next
We'll normally assess your application within 18 working days of receiving your form.
If you're entitled to help you will get either:
- Full help with health costs and will be given an HC2 certificate (this gives you free prescriptions)
- Partial help and be given an HC3 certificate which shows how much you have to pay towards your health costs
You should get your certificate within four weeks of applying.
Your certificate is usually valid for between six months and five years depending on your circumstances.
Ask for a review
If you disagree with the outcome of your application, you can ask for it to be formally checked by a Quality Reviewer. The Review Team will check that your application was correctly assessed.
You can request a review by emailing email@example.com or write to:
LIS Review Team
Help with Health Costs
152 Pilgrim Street
Newcastle Upon Tyne
Include the following in your correspondence:
- your certificate number
- full name
- date of birth
- address and post code
- telephone number
- a brief description of why you are requesting a review