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FREE VITAMINS IN KIRKLEES

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NCC11 Fri 27-Feb-15 11:54:07

Pregnant women and new mums with babies under 12 months old along with all children aged between 6 months and 4 years who live in Kirklees get free vitamins. The Kirklees Public Health scheme aims to help combat vitamin D deficiency and give babies and children a healthier start.

This is not means tested and every family can access the scheme whether they are receiving benefits or not.

Kirklees residents can pick up their free vitamins at any local children’s centre or can speak with their doctor, midwife or health visitor. A full list of local referral points is available by calling Yorkshire Children’s Centre on 01484 415465 or emailing: vitamins@yccuk.org.uk.

Figures from health sources show that up to a quarter of the population has low levels of vitamin D in their blood and the majority of pregnant women do not take vitamin D supplements. Vitamin D is important as it helps our bodies absorb calcium which in turn keeps bones and teeth healthy. Young children and babies who don’t get enough vitamin D can get softened bones and in severe cases this can lead to bone problems such as rickets.

Healthy Start vitamins are specially designed for young children, pregnant women and breastfeeding mums and contain the specific supplements as recommended by the Department of Health, including vitamin D.

The Kirklees free vitamin scheme runs alongside the national Healthy Start programme which is designed to help low income families by providing vouchers to help towards the cost of buying milk, fresh fruit and vegetables, infant formula and vitamins.

Any family receiving benefits such as income support, job seekers allowance or tax credits can check if they are eligible for the national scheme at www.healthystart.nhs.uk.

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