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How to Play The Health Lottery

Look through the steps below to learn how to play the Health Lottery's Big Win game. You can take part in the game online or by visiting an authorised Health Lottery retailer (instore). Draws take place every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday - that's five chances to win big each week.

Picking your numbers

Choose five numbers from 1-50

Pick five numbers between 1 and 50. It is up to you whether you choose your own numbers or select a Quick Pick. If you opt for a Quick Pick, a set of random numbers will be generated on your behalf.

If you like to play the same numbers in every draw, you can get a Playcard to help you play more quickly in the future.

Choosing your draws

Decide how many draws to play

Choose which days you want to play – mark down Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday or Saturday. You can also select to enter the next draw or every draw.

You also have to decide how many weeks to play in advance, up to a maximum of five. If you play online, it is also possible to play continuously by Direct Debit.


Purchase your tickets

Once you have made your selections, you just need to pay for your entries. It costs £1 per line to play the Health Lottery.

The cut-off time for purchasing tickets is 7:45pm. If you miss this deadline, you will have to wait until sales reopen for the next draw.

Health Lottery Playcards

Health Lottery Playcards help you to play quickly when you visit a retailer. You can pick up a Playcard in-store and then activate it at the retailer or online. There are two different types of Playcard:

  • Blue - This Playcard will store up to 10 sets of your favourite numbers. You just need to hand it to a retailer and you will be given a ticket much faster than if you had to fill in a playslip. If you register the blue Playcard online, it will give you access to a rewards scheme so that you get offers and bonuses when you play.
  • Red - The red Playcard is ideal if you want to enter Quick Picks rather than your own numbers. The retailer will scan your card and give you as many Quick Picks as you want for the next draw.

How to Win the Health Lottery

To win Health Lottery prizes, you must match your numbers to the winning numbers. You need to match all five main numbers to land the jackpot, but you also win prizes for matching as few as two numbers. Go to the Prizes and Odds page to see all the ways to win.

Bonus Ball

You only have to select five numbers from a range of 1 to 50 but a total of six balls appear in every Health Lottery draw. The extra number is known as the Bonus Ball and it increases the value of payouts if you match it in addition to two, three, or four of the main numbers. You also win a free ticket if you match one main number and the Bonus Ball.

This additional ball is drawn from the same pool as the main numbers, but you do not select a Bonus Ball when you purchase a ticket. The sole purpose of this number is to boost the value of non-jackpot prizes.

For example, if you select the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 and the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and Bonus Ball 5 appear in a Health Lottery draw, you would win a Match 4 + Bonus Ball prize of £10,000 rather than the Match 4 prize of £300. The Prizes page shows how matching the Bonus Ball increases your payout if you also match at least one main number.

How to Play Free Prize Draws

£100,000 draws take place every Wednesday, with Saturday night Megadraws offering £475,000. You will be automatically entered into that night's special draw when you purchase a ticket, so it is effectively a free extra chance to win.

A separate draw takes place to the main Health Lottery draw, with another five numbers randomly selected from a pool of 1 to 50. If all five of your numbers match the winning numbers, you win the £100,000 or £475,000 jackpot. There are no other prizes in these special draws.

How Does the Health Lottery Work?

The Health Lottery operates as a single game but it consists of 12 separate society lotteries. A society lottery is one that exists for charitable purposes, and the dozen that come together for the Health Lottery each represent a different region of the country. The regions are: East, East Midlands, London East, London West, North East & Cumbria, North West, Scotland, South East, South West, Wales, West Midlands, Yorkshire & Humber.

More than 25 percent of the money raised from each ticket is set aside for good causes, and a different region benefits each month of the year. An independent body - the People’s Health Trust (PHT) - determines which projects should receive funding. Applicants should be able to prove that they are dedicated to battling health inequality in Great Britain.