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This article explains who has the right to receive free hospital treatment under the National Health Service (NHS). It also tells you about the kind of hospital care you may have to pay for.
Please tell us if you have any difficulty reading this article and we can try to arrange help for you to understand this document.
For further information, please contact the overseas visitors team or see our website for advice.
The NHS is a state-funded organisation which provides free hospital treatment to people who are legally living in the UK on a permanent basis. If you are not ordinarily resident in the UK, you may have to pay for your hospital treatment, even if you have a British passport, or have paid National Insurance contributions and taxes in this country in the past.
You will not be charged for treatment that you receive in the A&E department. However, this does not include emergency treatment given in any other department in the hospital.
No. There are a number of circumstances under which you might still be entitled to free healthcare
Our overseas visitors team can give you more information if you are not sure whether you are entitled to free hospital treatment. They can also advise you about which documents to use when you are asked for evidence of entitlement. Their contact details are below.
For general medical advice please use the NHS website, the NHS 111 service, walk-in-centres, or your GP.
This article is intended for patients receiving care in Brighton & Hove or Haywards Heath.
The information in this article is for guidance purposes only and is in no way intended to replace professional clinical advice by a qualified practitioner.
Publication Date: June 2021
Review Date: October 2022