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HMRC internal manual

VAT Government and Public Bodies

Government departments and health authorities: Contracted Out Services (COS) Headings: COS Heading 40 - Messenger, portering and reception services

This Heading covers messenger, portering and reception services.


  • Collection and distribution of internal mail by a private company
  • Patient appointment/reminder services
  • Portering services such as the movement of patients and equipment around hospitals
  • Movement of corpses by funeral directors to or from the hospital site


  • The hire of telephone equipment/telephone lines or switchboard equipment alone
  • Hire of agency staff to supplement in-house services during peak times or to cover leave