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The NHS Trust apologizes for the trauma caused by billing “overseas” patients.Immigrants and asylum

Ann NHS The trust approach of billing “overseas” patients for medical care involves people treating survivors of domestic violence, including thousands of pounds of bills and one patient on the street. You may have scared you to ask.

Lewisham and the Greenwich NHS Trust (LGT) said, “Patients are compassionate or [the] “Trust”, and accepted everything except one of the 39 recommendations in the report.

This report was produced by a panel of trust officials and local activists commissioned as a result of the controversy. Pilot scheme in which the credit referral agency Experian played a role When checking the eligibility of trust patients for free non-emergency treatment.

Immigrant rights activists welcomed the report, as the hospital enforced government regulations requiring non-emergency medical care for “non-resident” patients in the UK, similar to LGTs in NHS trusts across the country. Warned that there was a situation. These fees often affect people whose immigration status is unknown or under review.

In the report, Trust said that the “ethical, financial and clinical tensions” arising from the billing system would be completely resolved without a radical redesign of the current patient billing framework set by the government. It is unlikely that it will be done. “

According to the report, the panel said, “Trust’s approach to patient billing can make patients feel uncomfortable, scared, unable to seek timely treatment, or go to another hospital for treatment. I received the details when I selected. “

In the 2019 case, a pregnant woman charged with prenatal care expressed her confidence that she could not afford to pay, but agreed to a repayment plan with a deposit borrowed from a friend. By the end of her pregnancy, she became poor and homeless on the streets. Women were not allowed to work for immigrant status.

Another incident involved Kioma, a survivor of domestic violence who came to the UK in 2016.

She was not informed of the potential charges when she began receiving antenatal care, but five months after giving birth in June 2019, she received a sudden letter from the trust requesting £ 15,480. I did.

“That wasn’t what I expected,” she said. Observer.. “When I opened it and read it, I remember slumping at the foot of the stairs and just screaming. I had a panic attack at that point. Where should I start?”

She offered to start repayment for £ 30 a month, but when the total monthly income she received from the council to cover the lives of her and her newborn daughter was £ 500, the trust Did not accept anything less than £ 100 per month. cost.

She said the trust’s “overseas visitor team” representatives were not sympathetic. I remember she gave me an atmosphere like “It’s not my job, you just have to pay this amount”. And I remember the feeling of “what do you really want me to do?”

She has now extended her vacation to stay and find a job. “At that time, I couldn’t afford to pay £ 100 a month, but I’m here now, working, paying taxes and contributing to the economy. My daughter is fine, so at that time I I wouldn’t have been able to contribute to the economy here if it hadn’t been taken care of or we didn’t have that access. “

After the campaign group’s maternity action was involved, the trust agreed to waive the fee, but it could still affect future visas and immigration applications to the Interior Ministry.

Hera Lorandos of the Lewisham Refugee and Migrant Network said: They reflect the practices of many other trusts throughout the UK. This practice is a unique result of hostile environmental law that forces NHS trusts to become border guards.

“Currently, trusts have to demand documents, impose catastrophic debt on people, refuse treatment, and share patient information with the Ministry of Interior, which helps break universal health insurance promises. It only inevitably spreads fear and distrust and prevents many from receiving life-saving care.

“We welcome the steps taken by the Trust to reduce the damage caused by the policy, but we are determined to end this discriminatory and harmful policy altogether.”

A spokesperson for Lewisham and the Greenwich NHS Trust said: We have made many changes to ensure that we act in an empathic, compassionate and supportive way for these patients. I apologize for past cases where this was not the case. “

Department for health Social Care was not responding to requests for comment by the time it was published.

The NHS Trust apologizes for the trauma caused by billing “overseas” patients.Immigrants and asylum

Source link The NHS Trust apologizes for the trauma caused by billing “overseas” patients.Immigrants and asylum

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