Guidance to help you navigate the complex UK benefits system
If you need advice on what you could be claiming do contact a local Welfare Rights service such as Citizens Advice. If you call your local council and say you want help with welfare rights they will give you a local contact number.
NASS have access to a number of publications produced by an external agency called Benefits and Work covering a range of issues including:
- Claiming PIP and appealing PIP decisions
- Claiming ESA and appealing ESA decisions
These are all available free of charge to NASS members by contacting Garry Williams. Please specify which of the guides you would like to receive. We do also write supporting letters for NASS members.
If feel you need more advice we recommend that you contact a Welfare Rights organisation which offer a free service. They will often provide you with assistance in filling out long forms correctly and will make sure you know what benefits are available to you.
If you do feel you have been unjustly turned down for a benefit then do appeal the decision. Use your closest Welfare Rights organisation and make sure you have our guide to appealing.
NHS Low Income Scheme
If you are on a low income, the NHS Low Income Scheme could help you pay for things like prescription charges, dental treatment, the cost of sight tests and the cost of travelling to receive NHS treatment.
The amount of help you’re entitled to depends on your household income and outgoings.
Prescription prepayment certificate
A Prescription Payment Certificate (PPC) lets you get as many NHS prescriptions as you need for a set price. If you regularly pay prescription charges, a PPC could save you money. The prescription charge in England is £9.00 per item.
A PPC costs:
- £29.10 for 3 months
- £104 for 12 months
The quickest way to buy a PPC is to buy it online.
European Health Insurance Card
A European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) gives you the right to access state-provided healthcare during a temporary stay in another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland.
The EHIC covers treatment that is medically necessary until your planned return home. Treatment should be provided on the same basis as it would to a resident of that country, either at a reduced cost or, in many cases, free of charge.
You can apply for or renew an EHIC using the official EHIC online application form. This is free of charge. Beware of unofficial websites, which may charge if you apply through them.
If the UK leaves the EU without a deal on October 31 2019, your access to healthcare when visiting an EU country is likely to change. If you are planning to visit on or after October 31 2019, you should continue to buy travel insurance so you can get the healthcare treatment you need, just as you would if visiting a non-EU country.