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UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 4312
Experience:  English solicitor with over 12 years experience
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MY Sister was born in England and worked here from the age

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MY Sister was born in England and worked here from the age of 15 until about 40 years old and then moved to South Africa. She is now 65 and receives her OAP at a reduced rate as she did not have the full amount of stamps. She travelled to England this May and required Hospital treatment. Now back in South Africa she has received a bill from the NHS for £3165 for her NHS treatment. Is this correct? That she should be asked to pay for her treatment? I want to add that my Sister was taken from the plane by Para Medics as her condition was an emergency. She then spent 5 days in Hospital and was only allowed to return to SA 3 weeks later. The reason I say this is because I think they have different rules when treating an emergency and could well be a grey area. Thanks Jerry Stevenson

There are two possible exemptions applicable in your sister' s case which should see the NHS bill go
1. Firstly that her case was an emergency and any overseas person is exempted from emergency NHS treatment
2 she is a UK state pensioner who has previously lived here for 10 continuous years and was treated here as the need to be treated arose without any pre planned treatment.
The overseas visitors guidance
at page 36 states that
Regulation 23(a) – UK state pensioners
3.98 UK state pensioners who have lived lawfully in the UK, or been employed by the UK government, for ten continuous years at some point are exempt from charges for treatment the need for which arises during the visit to the UK. This is regardless of where they are now residing, how long each year they reside there or if they have registered as resident there.
Examples of evidence:
- (a) confirmation in receipt of UK state pension (not private or occupational pension) – e.g. pension slip, pink form BR 464, confirmation from DWP; and
- (b) proof of ten years continuous residence e.g. previous job, schools attended, previous address(es).
Hope this helps
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