Item Welcome to the NHS Business Services Authority Knowledge Base, the place to ask us anything you need to know

Document What other forms of support could I be entitled to?

Council Tax Exemption or Discount

Full-time students are usually either exempt from Council Tax or are entitled to discount disregards.

Student Loans
If you are undertaking a pre-registration healthcare course you may be entitled to apply for a reduced non-income assessed student loan to cover the balance of your living costs.
NHS Bursaries are not intended to meet all your requirements, so you are encouraged to consider carefully whether you will need an additional loan to provide extra financial support during your course.
Student loans are not available for students on Diploma (DipHE) courses that commenced prior to 1 September 2012.

For full-time students, the quickest and easiest way to apply for a reduced rate student loan is to do it online. If you are a new full-time student you can apply as soon as you have made your course application.
Find out more about student finance and student loans at

University and college hardship funds

If you have taken up your full entitlement to a bursary and a student loan (if applicable) and you are in need of further financial support, as an NHS funded student you may be able to apply for financial help from your universities hardship funds.

Your student support office, student services office or the student union of your university can provide advice about the fund and how to apply as these are administered via universities and not through NHS Student Bursaries.

NHS Hardship Grant (Medical and Dental students only)
If you are a Medical or Dental student who has exhausted all other sources of financial help, and you are still experiencing financial difficulties, you may, exceptionally, be eligible for an NHS Hardship Grant.
All Medical and Dental students eligible for an NHS bursary (except ‘fees only’ bursary award holders), may apply.
Payments will not be made to you if you have chosen not to take up your full student loan and any other form of funding or financial assistance that is available to you.

Applications should be made in writing, attaching details and evidence of your personal financial circumstances to:

Operations Manager
NHS Student Bursaries, Hesketh House, 200-220 Broadway, Fleetwood, Lancashire, FY7 8SS

You should send evidence that you have already applied for a student loan and any other relevant forms of funding/financial assistance. Applications cannot be considered if you have not already tried to access these other forms of support first.

Your application will be looked at within 20 working days of it being received and will be treated in the strictest confidence.

NHS Low Income Scheme
If you are not automatically exempt from paying NHS charges (see here for more information) but have a low income you may be entitled to claim full or partial help with these costs by applying to the NHS Low Income Scheme.
The NHS Low Income Scheme covers:
  • NHS prescriptions
  • NHS dental treatment
  • sight tests, glasses and contact lenses
  • travel to receive NHS treatment
  • NHS wigs and fabric supports
You can apply for a certificate before you need any treatment. However, if you’ve already paid charges you can apply for a refund at the same time as you apply for a certificate. You can find out more about the NHS Low income Scheme here.
Prescription prepayment certificate
If you are not automatically exempt from paying NHS charges and are not eligible for full help with these costs via the NHS Low Income Scheme, you could save money on NHS prescription charges by buying a prescription prepayment certificate (PPC).  You can find out more about PPCs here.