Local Members of the Senedd Sarah Murphy and Huw Irranca-Davies are encouraging eligible families in Bridgend and Ogmore to sign up for an NHS scheme which provides healthy food and vitamins for free.
Under the Healthy Start scheme, families can get a pre-paid card that is topped up every 4 weeks with credit to help them buy healthy food – fruit, vegetables, pulses, milk and infant formula. They can also get free Healthy Start vitamins.
Figures show that nearly 40% of people within Wales who are eligible for the scheme are currently not claiming it.
Sarah Murphy MS, Bridgend, said:
“Four in ten people across Wales who could be receiving support with the cost of healthy food through Healthy Start have not yet applied.
“With the cost-of-living crisis affecting so many families in Wales, I want to make sure that people are aware of the help which is available through the Healthy Start scheme.
“If you think you might be eligible, please apply online.”
Huw Irranca-Davies MS added:
“With the cost-of-living crisis affecting so many families in Wales, I want to make sure that people in Ogmore are aware of the help which is available through the Healthy Start scheme.
“Healthy Start is available to those who are more than 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under four, and are in receipt of certain benefits. From the 10th week of pregnancy until a child turns 4, you could be entitled to more than £1,200 to spend on healthy food.”
Ogmore and Bridgend residents can apply here: https://www.healthystart.nhs.uk/.
Healthy Start cards can be used in retailers that sell food and accept MasterCard.
They can be used to buy:
- cow’s milk
- fresh, frozen, and tined fruit and vegetables
- dried and tinned pulses
- first infant formula milk
Those eligible can also collect free Healthy Start vitamins. Taking certain vitamins during pregnancy and in early childhood improves both mothers’ and children’s health. Midwives and health visitors can also provide advice on where to get them.
Families can check out if they are eligible at www.healthystart.nhs.uk.