There have been a number of changes to the benefits system and the issue remains high on the political agenda.

Many people living with heart disease will be eligible for benefits and this support can help to ease financial worries at a time when people and their families should be focusing on recovery, rehabilitation and managing their condition.

Our research

In 2011, we commissioned research to understand how heart patients and carers  navigate the benefits system. We found that the complexity of the system means people can find it difficult to know about all the different benefits that exist and whether or not they might be eligible for them. Many people need help to fill in the complex and lengthy forms to apply.

There was also some concern that the benefits system doesn't recognise the particular needs of heart patients. For example, there's limited understanding of the fluctuating nature of heart failure, which means people more or less well on different days.

We think that information on benefits and other financial matters should be part of a good quality cardiac rehabilitation programme and that it should be made easier for people to understand the system.

If you're worried about financial issues visit our money advice pages for sources of further support.

For more information email [email protected].