"Eligibility for HC2 NHS Certificate"

About: NHS England

(as the patient),

I am a full time student in my final year at University. When I was in my second year I applied for help with NHS costs, particularly dentist treatments as my mum had told me all students are entitled to either free or discounted costs. I did so and was swiftly awarded a HC2 certificate, that entitled me to free treatments.

A year on from this and I decided to apply again. My circumstances had not changed other than receiving less funding from student finance than I had done previously. Frustratingly I was awarded a HC3 certificate which entitles me to minimal discount on expensive dentist treatments. I was confused as to why I was no longer eligible for the HC2 certificate since I am still in full time education and living away from home. I also have a part time job at university contracted to 10 hours a week. Over the Christmas holidays I earned approximately £60 from December to the end of January. Sometimes I do not work all of my contracted hours and over exam periods and holidays I do not work at all. Yet the assessor for the NHS states that I earn £50 every week regardless of notes I had put in to make them aware that I do not work every week every month. Further to this student finance reduced my loan by £1200. I decided to reapply when this happened and have been disappointed to find regardless of the reduction of my loan and the fact I do not work as regularly as the assessor wants to claim I have been granted the HC3 certificate yet again.

The assessor sent a breakdown of my claim and also claims my housing costs are £80.24 a week something that is completely inaccurate. I had hoped that with a reduced loan I would be entitled to the HC2 certificate. I am dumbfounded as nothing has changed since my second year other than myself having less money, yet I am being denied a certificate I was granted when I was in a better off position.

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