Plans tabled to double the Immigration Health Surcharge

Proposals put before Parliament to double the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) could see the NHS receive an estimated £220 million in extra funding.

Since the surcharge was introduced in 2015 it has raised over £600 million. The latest plans would see the surcharge increase from £200 to £400 per year for non-EU nationals, with students and those on the Youth Mobility Scheme on the discounted rate of £300 per year. This would better reflect the cost to the NHS of treating those who pay the surcharge, as the Department for Health & Social Care estimate that the NHS spends £470 on average per person per year on treating those required to pay the surcharge.

Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes said: “Our NHS is always there when you need it, paid for by British taxpayers. We welcome long-term migrants using the NHS, but the NHS is a national, not international health service and we believe it is right that they make a fair contribution to its long-term sustainability.

“I am pleased that we are a step closer to implementing the changes to the health surcharge, and the extra money raised will go directly towards sustaining and protecting our world-class healthcare system. It is only fair that people who come to the UK make a contribution to the running of the NHS, and even with the increase we still continue to offer a good deal on healthcare for those seeking to live in the UK temporarily.”

The increase is set to come into effect in December 2018 subject to Parliamentary approval.

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