Help with health costs

older man outside in winter

Once you reach the age of 60, many NHS services are free to everyone‚ but charges are made for some services.

Which NHS services are free?

The following services are free when you reach the age of 60:

  • NHS prescriptions
  • NHS-funded sight tests
  • an invitation every two years to be screened for bowel cancer

The annual flu jab is free once you reach the age of 65

What help do I get if I'm on Pension Credit?

Pension Credit is a weekly entitlement that older people on a low or modest income may be awarded. It has two parts – Guarantee Credit and Savings Credit.

If you receive the Guarantee Credit portion of Pension Credit, you're entitled to the following:

  • free prescriptions
  • free dental treatment
  • vouchers towards glasses or contact lenses
  • wigs and fabric supports
  • help with costs of travel to hospital

However, if you receive the Savings Credit portion of Pension Credit on its own, you're not entitled to help with health costs.

opens link in new window Download our free Pension Credit guide (PDF 637 KB)

The NHS Low Income Scheme

This scheme may help anyone on a low income and with capital of no more than £16,000 who currently pays for:

  • prescriptions
  • NHS dental checks and treatment
  • glasses or contact lenses
  • travel costs to receive NHS treatment while under the care of a consultant and in some cases following a referral by a doctor or dentist

You can get a form to apply from Jobcentres, many opticians, dentists, local hospitals and GP surgeries.

You can find out more from the Help with Health Costs Helpline on 0300 330 1343.

opens link in new window Download the Help with Health costs factsheet (PDF 165 KB)

We are grateful for the generous support of Dr Naim Dangoor CBE
and The Exilarch's Foundation

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