Healthy Start vouchers
If you need help with your Healthy Start vouchers claim, please call the Healthy Start Issuing Unit on 0345 607 6823.
Healthy Start is a scheme to help expectant mothers, new parents and their children to eat healthily. If you qualify, you can get free vitamins, and a voucher towards the costs of milk, vegetables (including frozen vegetables) and fruit (or infant formula milk if you have had your baby). You qualify for the help if you (or a member of your family who can claim benefits for you) are on:
- Income Support.
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance.
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance.
- Maximum Child Tax Credit, and you do not qualify for Working Tax Credit (unless it is during the four week run-on period after you stop working or after your hours drop to below 16 a week).
- Universal Credit (from 1 November 2016, you must earn no more than £408 per month after tax and national insurance to qualify. That includes the earnings of a partner you live with).
If you are pregnant and under 18 it doesn’t matter whether you are on any benefits or not, you will still qualify.
You should ask your midwife or health visitor about claiming Healthy Start vouchers. You can also find an application form on the Healthy Start website. You will always need a health professional to authorise your claim and state that you have been given advice about healthy eating.
A Healthy Start voucher is currently worth £3.10 per week.
If you qualify for Healthy Start Vouchers, then once you are ten weeks pregnant, you are entitled to one Healthy Start voucher a week for yourself. When your baby is born you get another voucher. You are entitled to these two vouchers each week until your baby is one (or until it is a year since the expected date of birth, if your baby was premature). Then you are entitled to one voucher a week until your child is four. You need to make sure you claim Child Tax Credit before your baby is four months old to make sure you get all your vouchers and they do not stop after your baby is born.
If you have more than one child, you get a voucher for each, so, for example, if you have one child under one and one under four you would get three vouchers a week.
Healthy Start vouchers are accepted at many shops and most supermarkets. You can check for retailers near you on the Healthy Start website.