The Department of Health and Social Care have announced the IHS reimbursement scheme this opened from 01 October 2020. The UK Prime Minister made commitment to exempt all health and care workers from the surcharge following heroic efforts throughout the pandemic, this reimbursement is as a result of that. There is now guidance and a new online portal that is available to help health and care workers to claim reimbursement. Thousands of international health and care workers who have worked tirelessly to save lives during the Covid-19 pandemic are exempt from the immigration health surcharge (IHS) to pay to use the NHS from 01 October 2020.
Following the promise Boris Johnson made in May overseas NHS and care workers are now able to claim their reimbursement from the surcharge. The government’s Tier 2 Health and Care Visa, launched in August, which exempted eligible staff from paying the Immigration Health Surcharge. The new reimbursement scheme goes further back to ensure that staff not covered by the visa, but who have worked in the NHS or care sector since 31 March, are able to claim reimbursement for themselves and their dependants, even if they paid the surcharge before this date. Applicants will be required to apply for reimbursements on a 6-monthly basis, where they have worked for at least 16 hours per week over the full 6 months. The reimbursement payments for the IHS will be paid in 6-month instalments.
The Health and Care Visa a fast-track visa route for those that are eligible health and care professionals and includes an exemption to the surcharge, which makes it cheaper, quicker and easier for people with the right skills from around the world to come to the UK. This will help grow the UK workforce to deliver 50,000 more nurses, 6,000 more doctors in general practice, as well as thousands more pharmacists, physiotherapists and other highly skilled practitioners over the next five years.