New regulations: NHS charges to overseas visitors coming into force in February 2022

On 10 January 2022, the Government made new regulations, approved by Parliament, which amended the National Health Service (Charges to Overseas Visitors) Regulations 2015.

Readers will know those Regulations provide for the making and recovery of charges for relevant services provided under the National Health Service Act 2006 to overseas visitors. The new regulations come into force on 14 February 2022. You can find out more on the commissioning aspects of the overseas visitor charging regime by watching our earlier webinar recording here.

There are two main amendments:

1. The amended Regulations provide for an exemption from charging overseas visitors for use of certain NHS services, for those individuals who are participating in the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham in 2022 (except individuals from Games workforce).

The exemption applies to treatment, the need for which arises during the individual’s visit to the United Kingdom, and is limited to the period beginning with 14th July 2022 and ending with 17th August 2022.

2. In Schedule 1 (diseases for which no charge is to be made for treatment), "Wuhan novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV)" is replaced by "Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)".

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