From 6 April, all nationals from outside of Europe, including Vietnam, coming to live in the UK for longer than six months will be required to pay a ‘health surcharge’ in order to gain access to the UK’s National Health Service
Currently non-European nationals coming to work, study or join family members receive free medical treatment under the UK’s NHS in the same way as a permanent resident.
These changes will ensure that those coming to live in the UK make an appropriate financial contribution to the cost of their healthcare.
The health surcharge will be £200 per year and £150 per year for students and will be payable at the same time that an individual submits their visa application on-line. Visa applicants will need to pay up-front for the total period of their UK visa.
British Ambassador to Vietnam Giles Lever said:
The UK is hugely proud of its National Health Service, which provides world class care to all residents. It is only fair that those coming to live or study in the UK make a financial contribution to the public services they are entitled to access, which is why we are introducing this change.
We, of course, recognise the very valuable contribution those coming to the UK to study and work make to the wider economy and so have deliberately kept the surcharge at a competitive level - lower than most private health insurance policies.
The changes will not affect visitors coming to the UK on a visit visa and visitors will continue to have to pay for any treatment they receive from the NHS at the point they receive it.
The surcharge levels are lower than the cost of medical insurance required in some of our competitor nations and, for overseas students, the surcharge represents only 1% of the total cost of studying in the UK for a three year undergraduate course.
Having paid the surcharge, migrants will have the same access to the NHS as a UK permanent resident for the duration of their visa. The money generated by the health surcharge will go directly to funding the NHS.
Further information and guidance is on website GOV.UK