An updated version of the ‘guidance on implementing the overseas visitor hospital charging regulations’ was issued to National Health Service bodies on 1 February 2016. This guidance explains what should happen when an overseas visitor, including from the European Economic Area (EEA) needs NHS treatment provided by an NHS hospital in England.
The Department on behalf of the United Kingdom Government reimburses other EEA countries and Switzerland for the cost of providing treatment to people we are responsible for under European Union law, irrespective of nationality. In the same way, other EEA countries and Switzerland reimburse the UK for the cost of the NHS providing treatment to people they are responsible for under EU law, including UK nationals insured in another EEA country or Switzerland.
The table below provides information about how much the UK paid to other EEA countries and Switzerland, and how much was paid to the UK for NHS provided treatments. Visitors from other countries are charged directly for their healthcare.
EEA Medical Costs
Member State Claims (against UK)
UK Claims (against EEA, Switzerland)
Source: Resource Accounting and Budgeting (RAB) exercise. Totals are based on estimates of the costs of European Economic Area (EEA) healthcare claims made annually for the purposes of provisions made in the Department of Health accounts in accordance with Treasury resource accounting rules.
Notes: Waiver is an agreed intentional relinquishment of healthcare costs between Member States
- Denmark – Full waiver
- Estonia and Norway – Waiver, excepting former Article 22.1c (patient referral) & Article 55.1c (industrial injury) claims
- Finland, Hungary and Malta – Waiver, excepting former Article 22.1c (patient referral) claims