Damien Gayle (The Guardian)
New charges for foreign users of NHS come into force

Migrants and visitors to the UK not eligible for free healthcare will from now on be charged upfront for the cost of their treatment, as rules come into force that also extend charging to community health services and charities that receive NHS funding.

The system, designed to counter “health tourism”, requires medical staff to establish whether patients are eligible for state-funded healthcare before providing treatment. If they are not, patients must pay an upfront charge that is currently set at 150% of the cost to providers.

This is likely to affect asylum seekers whose claims have been refused and other migrants with no recourse to public funds. There is considerable concern in the nmediacl profession that even thoise entitled to treatment will be afraid to access it in case it affects their immigration status.

More details can be found in the report on the Guardian website

Courtesy of Guardian News & Media Ltd