How to find out if you are entitled to help with health costs on low income grounds
To find out if the NHS Low Income Scheme can help you, fill in an HC1 form (claim for help with health costs).
People who do not need to fill in form HC1
You do not need to fill in an HC1 if you, or your partner if you have one, are:
- getting Income Support
- getting Universal Credit (in certain circumstances - please see here)
- getting income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
- getting income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- getting Pension Credit Guarantee Credit
- named on, or entitled to, an NHS Tax Credit Exemption Certificate
as the benefit or Tax Credits you or your partner get already entitles you to full help with health costs.
Also, do not fill in an HC1 if you, or you and your partner between you, have more than:
- £16,000 in savings, investments or property (not counting the place where you live); or
- £23,250 in savings, investments or property if you live permananently in a care home (£24,000 if you live in Wales)
as you cannot claim any help through the NHS Low Income Scheme.
Where to get an HC1 form
To get an HC1 form, if you live in:
- England, you can order an HC1 to be posted to you. (Data Protection Act 1998 - The NHS Business Services Authority will disclose the information you have provided to an approved third party who will issue the appropriate application form. We will not disclose your information to other third parties nor transfer it outside of the European Economic Area. You may be contacted to discuss your application. Your personal data will be deleted from our systems and files 9 months after the expiry of your certificate. This is to support our exemption checking processes.)
- Scotland, you can download and print off an HC1. Please ensure you send all the pages of the completed form to us when you make your claim. You can also get an HC1 at community pharmacies, GP practices, Citizens Advice Scotland offices and Job Centre Plus offices
- Wales, you can get an HC1 by calling 0845 6031108 (select the option for health publications). Jobcentre Plus offices, NHS hospitals, dentists and opticians may also stock them too.
If you need help making your claim, call us on 0300 330 1343. One of our advisors will be pleased to help.