A £200 charge per person was not imposed on nationals from these countries but from April this year they are now expected to pay the fee. The fee is currently £200 per year for those who are living temporarily in the country and £150 for students with dependents’ being charged the same amount as the main visa applicant. The surcharge can be paid upfront.
Keeping in tow with their immigration status, the surcharge has been introduced so that those non-EEA migrants who come to the UK contribute to the NHS. This is not a charge that is linked to the Visa, even though it is taken by the home office. The payment is moved directly to the NHS and it will be made using the same terms as those who live permanently in the UK.
The Home Office have made it clear that the surcharge is fixed at a rate that is extremely competitive and for the duration of their stay, the charge is less than that of a medical insurance.
For those students and migrants who are working in countries such as the USA and Australia, private medical insurance is a requirement but it is also more expensive. In the UK, private medical healthcare which can be compared to the care provided by the NHS will be considerably higher.
In most cases, for those who opt to have basic medical insurance, they will not be covered for the full range of treatments that are currently accessible through the NHS. This also includes any pre-existing illnesses or chronic conditions that they may have. In most cases, if there is a medical emergency, the NHS will still be providing the treatment.
In the same way as a permanent resident, those who pay a healthy surcharge will still have the same access and their care will be received with no charge although they are likely to be charged for those services that a permanent resident would have to pay for. This would include dental treatment and prescription charges if they are residing in a country that charges for them.
When the individual applies to come to the UK, they will have the option to pay the health surcharge. The total amount is calculated by the amount of time they will spend in the UK and this is linked up with the appropriate category under the Immigration rules.
Should an individual commit to paying the surcharge and is then given a visa but they then choose to not come to the UK, the surcharge will not be returned to them. The same is applicable to those who leave the UK earlier than they had originally planned.
If the health surcharge is not paid then the visa or immigration application will not be granted. It is also possible that there could be a delay on the application if the full amount is not paid.
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