Exemption from NHS charges are not applicable for those who submitted Human Rights visa applications

In court case R (ERA) v Basildon And Thurrock Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust [2019] EWHC 1249 (Admin), the judge considered whether an applicant who submitted an immigration application based on human rights could be exempted from paying NHS fees, as it is in the case with asylum seekers.

According to the 2015 NHS Regulations, hospitals may charge foreign visitors for medical services. Exceptions are only applicable to those who have applied for temporary protection, asylum or humanitarian protection in accordance with Immigration Rules.

The applicant in this case is a Ghanaian citizen, who suffers from cancer. Twice she came to the UK to receive private medical care, and then filed in-country visa application based on human rights. Her point was that if she returns to Ghana, she would not be able to receive adequate treatment for cancer, and this would breach Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The applicant insisted that "asylum" category should also include cases when the removal of applicant to home country would breach article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

The court however ruled that exemption from NHS charges does not apply to individuals who based their immigration applications on the violation of human rights.

Posted in English on May 23, 2019.