Championing patients and staff
Keep Our NHS public has campaigned against the introduction of NHS charges for migrants since their introduction in 2014. We believe that the NHS should be free at the point of use for all, and that these charges are an attack on our communities and the basic principles of the NHS.
Charging for NHS treatment
Government policy has rendered 600k people, including 120,000 children, ineligible for free NHS care.
Since the law changed in 2015 many people are no longer deemed ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK and are charged for all NHS care at 150% of cost price except for emergency care. This has put many lives at risk and caused great hardship for many of our local residents. Since 2017 this policy has been further ramped up by the Government with more and more pressure being put on Trusts to collect money from those deemed as ‘non-resident’. Unpaid debts can lead to visas, or right to residency being removed.
Pregnant women are thought to be particularly targeted and a Freedom of Information request from Save Lewisham Hospital Campaign showed over 500 women in Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust in 2018 alone, were asked to pay up to £9,000 for having a baby. A new report from Maternity Action backed by the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) in September 2019 showed these charges risked making women unable to access appropriate perinatal care.
See our resource cabinet for more information and campaigning resources regarding racism and migration in the NHS.
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