Who can get help?
You may be entitled to benefits because of your lung condition, if you cannot work or you’re thinking of giving up work or if you have care or mobility needs.
View the government benefits available for people of working age.
There are different rules and benefits for older people who are already taking their pension.
There’s more below about help with travel, energy costs and other support.
People who care for someone with pulmonary fibrosis may also qualify for support and financial help from the government.
Need to know
- Much of the language around benefits refers to being ‘disabled’. You might be considered disabled because your pulmonary fibrosis limits you – even if you don’t think of yourself in this way.
- Each benefit is subject to different rules. Some are means tested – so they take into account existing benefits and income. Some are contributory, which means you need to have paid a certain amount of national insurance contributions to qualify.
- If you have a condition which might be expected to worsen fairly rapidly, your medical team might give you form DS1500, which means your claim can be processed rapidly for a higher rate payment.
Applying for benefits
Government support is designed to help you remain at home and continue with daily activities – rather than needing other care, which might be considerably more expensive.
When completing assessment forms, include as much information as possible to make it easy for the people reviewing the forms to give you the benefits you’re entitled to.
Think about everything, however small, that affects your quality of life. Give information about your whole day and night. Consider your bad days as well as your good days. It’s not just about whether you can do things – but how long they take you and whether you need time to recover afterwards.
If you and your spouse both have problems with everyday activities, you can both apply for benefits.
Getting help with forms
Claim forms can be very daunting – for example, the Attendance Allowance application form is over 30 pages long. It can therefore really help to get advice and help with the forms.
The following organisations can have specialist advisors who can help:
- Citizens Advice Bureau
- Age UK
- You can also ask your GP or hospital specialist for advice.
Other financial help
- You can get a bus pass for free travel if you’re disabled – contact your local council for details.
- You may be able to get a blue badge for on-street parking
- A Disabled Persons Railcard reduces the cost of train travel
- The Motability Scheme provides an affordable, worry-free way for people with disabilities to lease a car, scooter or powered wheelchair in exchange for their mobility allowance.
- Prescription prepayment certificates (PPCs) are available in England and can save you money. (There are no prescription charges in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland).
- You may qualify for the Winter Fuel payment or Cold weather payments.
- Your energy supplier may offer discounts for disabled people. Contact your energy supplier or the Warm Home Discount helpline on 0800 731 0214