British government may soon double up the health surcharge paid to 400 pounds per year by long-term visitors and students from India and other countries outside of the European Union (EU).
Introduced in April 2015 the health surcharge was earlier 200 pounds per year. The amount is paid by visitors coming from countries like India and seeking to live in United Kingdom for a minimum period of six months either for study purpose or to join family members.
The hike may come into effect from later this year with the purpose to raise more funds for the struggling state-funded National Health Service (NHS).
British Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes said, “It is only right that people who come to the UK should contribute to the running of the NHS. The surcharge offers access to health care services that are far more comprehensive and at a much lower cost than many other countries.”
Nokes added the generated income will be added to the NHS services fund to help in protecting and sustaining the healthcare system for users.
It is learned NHS spends about 470 pounds per person per year and the additional fund will be pumped back into the services.
United Kingdom Minister James O’Shaughnessy said the country welcomes long-term migrants to use the NHS services and to make a fair contribution too.
The health surcharge is paid at the time of making the application to live in UK for at least a period of six months.