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What is Healthy Start

Healthy Start supports pregnant women and their families to eat well and get the vitamins they need for healthy development. If you are 10+ weeks pregnant or have a family with children under 4 years old, you might be able to get help to buy healthy food and milk.

If you are eligible, you will be sent a Healthy Start card that has money on it. The card gets topped up automatically every 4 weeks. You can use your card in many shops across Birmingham.

What do you get?

  • £4.25 each week of your pregnancy from the 10th week
  • £8.50 each week for children from birth to 1 year
  • £4.25 each week for children between 1 and 4 years
  • Plus Healthy Start vitamins

Where can I use my Healthy Start Card and what can I get with it?

You can use your Healthy Start card in any shop or market that accepts Mastercard and sells any of the following items:

  • plain liquid cow’s milk
  • infant formula milk based on cow’s milk
  • fresh, frozen or tinned fruit and vegetables
  • fresh, dried and tinned pulses

You can also use your card to collect:

  • Healthy Start vitamins. These support you during pregnancy and breast feeding
  • Vitamin drops for babies and young children. These are suitable from birth up to 4 years old

Am I Eligible for Healthy Start?

You are eligible for a Healthy Start card if you:

  • Are getting certain benefits including Universal Credit and Child Tax Credit
  • Are at least 10 weeks pregnant
  • Have a child under four years old
  • Are under 18 and pregnant and don’t get any benefits

How do I check my eligibility apply?

  • Go directly to the Healthy Start website
  • By email or phone . All applicants need to provide Name, address, Date of Birth, National Insurance number and baby’s due date or child’s birth date.
  • No Recourse to Public Funds – email Healthystartclaim@dhsc.gov.uk and they will send an appropriate application form
  • If you do not have access to a computer or phone, ask your Midwife, Health Visitor, Children Centre staff or other organisations that you receive support


Page last updated: 7 November 2022