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Universal Credit brings changes to MAS eligibility criteria

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

As Universal Credit rolls out across the country, this will bring a change to the eligibility criteria for the Minor Ailments Scheme. Universal Credit replaces a number of benefits that exist today – some of which make a person eligible for MAS and help with health costs such as dental and ophthalmic treatments, and some which do not.

To reflect this, the regulations which lay out the eligibility criteria for MAS and help with health costs now set out an income threshold, above which people in receipt of Universal Credit are not eligible for the service.

The criteria are quite complex, but in practical terms if someone is unsure whether their level of Universal Credit income allows them to use MAS, they should check the reverse of their most recent Awards Notice, which clearly displays their income and the thresholds which qualify a person for help with health costs. Further information can be found online at The statement does not mention MAS but the service is included in help with health costs, and if this applies to a person then they should tick the “Jobseeker’s Allowance” box until such times as the forms are updated to include “Universal Credit” as an option. As ever, whilst pharmacy staff should check with the patient the reason for their eligibility, it is the patient’s responsibility that the information they provide is accurate and up to date.