GPs get key role in pregnancy grant scheme
By Nigel Praities
GPs will police a government scheme to improve the health of pregnant women in the later stages of pregnancy later this year.
The Health in Pregnancy Grant provides a tax-free £190 payment to pregnant women from their 25th week of pregnancy and practices will have to provide patients with application forms from this April.
In order for women to apply for the grant, GPs or midwives have to authorise the form to confirm the pregnancy and that they have provided ‘appropriate' maternal health information, such as routine advice on smoking cessation and healthy eating.
The grant will be available to nearly all women ordinarily resident in the UK, providing they are not subject to immigration control. The grant is not taxable or means-tested, and will not affect claims for other pregnancy benefits such as the Sure Start Maternity Grant.