Official Statement regarding the implementation of the NHS Charges to Visitors amendment


The National Health Service (Charges to Overseas Visitors) (Amendment) Regulations 2017


Following the planned implementation of policies relating to the Immigration Act (2014) whereby health and social care professionals have been told to check eligibility for free health care within UK borders, SWWB would like to stand in solidarity with all using services and convey our resistance to such racist and unethical treatment of those in need of health care.


Social Workers without Borders seek to highlight that free heath care for all is a right and not a privilege for the few. In effect this policy is asking professionals to compromise their ethics and breach their codes of practice.


It is our duty to protect and champion the health of all. This policy pushes an untrue narrative that immigration or so called health tourism is responsible for the crisis in health and social care when the reality is the devastation caused by years of underfunding and austerity measures.


This dangerous and unethical policy is asking those in our profession to create a tiered approach to health care deeming some more eligible than others in accordance to their country of origin. The National Health Service, developed in a time of global crisis, was established to provide high quality care for all those recovering from a state of conflict. In our current circumstance of global uncertainty we pledge that those involved in our campaigns will refuse to engage with such policies, to actively resist and to echo the sentiments of our medical colleagues. We are not border guards; we are here to provide care and treatment to those according to their need in accordance with their immigration status.


For more information on the Immigration Act policies please read


And refer to information provided by Docs Not Cops


To get involved in this campaign and join social workers without borders please contact