‘Moral victory’ for overseas healthcare workers as BMA welcomes decision to scrap ‘unfair’ surcharge

by BMA media team Press release from the BMA
Location: England
Published: Thursday 21 May 2020

Responding to the announcement that the Government is going to scrap the immigration health surcharge for overseas healthcare workers, BMA council chair Dr Chaand Nagpaul said:

“This announcement is long overdue but is testament to the BMA’s persistent lobbying for this surcharge, unfair to so many NHS workers from overseas, to be abolished. This is without a doubt a moral victory and brings huge relief to those facing bills of up to thousands of pounds – as well as the insult of having to pay for the very services they are working so hard to provide.

“The BMA has consistently said that all overseas healthcare workers should be exempt from paying the charge so at last, the Prime Minister has listened to our concerns.

“This is the least the Government should have done to recognise the effort these workers make – some have even given their lives. It’s absolutely crucial, that we recognise and value healthcare workers from overseas, who as this pandemic has clearly highlighted, provide an invaluable service protecting and looking after the health of our nation.

“The scrapping of the surcharge must come into effect immediately to show our gratitude for the effort and dedication our overseas workers give to the NHS and to their patients.”


Notes to editors

The BMA is a trade union and professional association representing and negotiating on behalf of all doctors in the UK. A leading voice advocating for outstanding health care and a healthy population. An association providing members with excellent individual services and support throughout their lives.