Foreigners may be charged for A&E treatment under new proposals

Simple question: What do we think of this?

Jeremy Hunt, the health secretary, is considering whether to charge foreigners for using ambulances and visiting A&E in a move that could further escalate tensions with the medical profession.

In a bid to raise money, Hunt is expected to announce a consultation within the next month on whether the NHS should charge patients from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) for emergency treatment.

While no one would be denied urgent care, hospitals would be allowed to withhold treatment for non-urgent medical problems until a payment was made.

Patients from inside the EEA would have to present their European Health Insurance card to receive treatment, and their government would be sent a bill.

Under the proposals, there would be certain exemptions on charging up front, such as for women in labour, while asylum seekers would be excluded from the system altogether.

Source: Foreigners may be charged for A&E treatment under new proposals | Politics | The Guardian

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11 thoughts on “Foreigners may be charged for A&E treatment under new proposals

  1. Dez

    Sounds like another to late knee jerk stunt by this much loathed Hunt.. This subject was aired widely, publicly and extensively many moons ago and in the usual apathy was poo pood by said Hunt as being to small a recovery to bother with v’s the cost of an admin army trying to keep score of the recovery costs. So what has changed? Has some bright spark suddenly belatedly woke up and discovered the true extent and cost of this budget leakage some of which it was earlier suggested arising from patient transfers resulting from inside jobs. Or is this another covert privatisation trial coming in via the back door….. sneaky Hunt?…never, he’s a true blue Con.

  2. Andy

    Lookıng at the comments on the artıcle ın The Guardıan ıt seems that there ıs consıderable support for thıs porposal and ıf expatrıates who no longer hold a UK resıdentıal qualıfıcatıon are already lıable for NHS cost (A&E excepted but subsequent admıssıon to a ward costs are chargeable to the patıent). Thıs ıs why pensıoners lıvıng overseas are advısed to take good ınsurance cover before coming on a short vısıt to see relatıves, for example

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      That’s just another false argument – the argument by selective observation. You’ve claimed that the evidence supports your point of view, but this is only your reading of what respondents to one media article said. Hardly conclusive at all, but you’ll try your best to persuade people it is. Tory tactic.

  3. Andy

    For me, I’m actually ok with it. I get a recurring eye problem the first few days I go somewhere sunny. Go to see the local doc, get some steroids, it clears up. I pay the fee, and it’s up to me to claim back the money when I get back.

    In return for paying, I’ve never failed to have prompt, quality service.

    So if someone comes here with a non-urgent need, let them pay to help fund the services they have just used without being taxed to help pay for them in the first place.

  4. Barry Davies

    Given the recent influx of migrants mostly from europe who apparently have the right to free health care here no matter how their own scheme works how will the hospitals be able to decide if you are or are not entitled to free care, there are some people who have lived and worked here for decades who have paid in the heading “foreigners” would seem to include those people as well which would be wrong.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      If other countries can discern a foreign national, it can’t be beyond the wit of the British.

Comments are closed.