Spring Bank Holiday on Monday 27 May means all rubbish and recycling collections will be one day later that week, including Friday collections taking place on Saturday 1 June.
Recycling and rubbish collection days are changing for some households in Mendip and South Somerset. Read about the changes and how they may affect you.


Children and young people under the age of 19 in full time education get help with most healthcare costs. But there can be additional costs – for example, payment for parking for regular appointments, or replacing equipment. There are some schemes to help with these costs.

Help with prescription costs

Some groups are automatically entitled to free NHS prescriptions. Others can apply for certificates that entitle them to free NHS prescriptions. This can include the individual is:

  • aged under 16
  • aged 16 to 18 and in full-time education
  • are pregnant or have had a baby in the previous 12 months
  • have a specified medical condition
  • have a continuing physical disability that prevents you going out without help from another person
  • are an NHS inpatient
  • are receiving or are a dependant of someone receiving certain benefits

There is a simple way to find out if you’re eligible for free NHS prescriptions and any help with other NHS costs. Use the eligibility checker and apply for a medical exemption certificate or maternity exemption certificate.

Some prescribed items are always free, including contraceptives and medication given to hospital inpatients. Your prescriber can give you more information.

If you aren’t eligible for free NHS prescriptions then a prescription prepayment certificate can help spread the cost.

NHS Low Income Scheme

If you have a low income, the NHS Low Income Scheme could help you pay for:

  • NHS prescription charges
  • NHS dental treatment charges
  • the cost of sight tests, glasses and contact lenses
  • the cost of travelling to receive NHS treatment
  • NHS wigs and fabric supports – check with your hospital for their arrangements for supplying NHS wigs

Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme

You may be able to claim a refund under the ‘Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme’ (HTCS) of the cost of travelling to hospital or other NHS premises for NHS-funded treatment or diagnostic test arranged by a doctor or dentist.

VAT relief for disabled people

If you’re disabled or have a long-term illness, you will not be charged VAT on products designed or adapted for your own personal or domestic use.

Hospital car parking

Parking can be an added stress when visiting hospital – costs soon add up for frequent visitors.

Hospitals provide free of charge parking for some groups of people. Each hospital has its own rules but often covers

  • those who are critically ill
  • parents staying overnight with sick children
  • disabled people

For more information about the individual hospital parking exemptions, visit their websites using the links below

Last reviewed: February 8, 2024 by Gemma

Next review due: August 8, 2024

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