‘Health tourists’ to face treatment bill

The government has confirmed controversial plans to crack down on
“health tourists” and refuse NHS treatment to failed asylum

Once an asylum seeker’s application has been turned down and the
appeals process exhausted, NHS treatment will no longer be free.
Even emergency treatment will have to be paid for, and the only
exemption will be for continuing treatment that began before an
asylum status decision was made.

The move follows a 14-week consultation that ended last October.
The measure will come into force in April.

Health minister John Hutton said:

“In making these rule changes it must be stressed we will continue
to meet our international obligations in providing health care for
genuine asylum seekers.”

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