If you are more than 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under four years old, you could be entitled to claim help under the Healthy Start scheme.
The scheme’s card can be used to buy healthy foods and milk for your youngsters.
According to official Government guidanceif parents are eligible, they will be sent a Healthy Start card that can be used in over 30,000 shops in the UK.
The benefit will be loaded onto the card every four weeks and can be used to buy:
- Plain liquid cow’s milk fresh,
- Frozen and tinned fruit and vegetables
- Fresh, dried and tinned pulses
- Infant formula milk based on cow’s milk
You can also get coupons to swap for:
- Pregnancy vitamins
- Breastfeeding vitamins
- Vitamins for children from birth to 4 years old
Am I eligible for Healthy Start vouchers?
According to the NHSyou qualify for the Healthy Start scheme if either:
- You’re at least 10 weeks pregnant
- You have at least one child under four years old
You must also be receiving any of the following:
- Child Tax Credit (but only if your family’s annual income is £16,190 or less)
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Pension Credit
- Universal Credit (but only if your family earns £408 or less per month from employment)
Mum’s under the age of 18 are automatically eligible, even if you do not receive benefits.
How to claim Healthy Start vouchers?
To claim Healthy start vouchers, you can head to the application page here.
You can also get an application form from your midwife or ‘health visitor’.
Alternatively, you can phone the Healthy Start helpline on 0345 607 6823.
In Scotland, the Healthy Start scheme is known as the Best Start Foods.
Using you Healthy Start card
Before using your Healthy Start card in shops, you must activate it and get your PIN.
To activate your card, click here.