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NHS workers from abroad need your help. Do the right thing. #scrapthesurcharge

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LATEST: THE PUNITIVE NHS SURCHARGE FOR OUR HEALTH WORKERS FROM OVERSEAS STAYS. IT'S UNFAIR, UNJUST AND IRRATIONAL.

#scrapthesurcharge

Do you hate injustice? And do you admire NHS and other health workers from abroad?

Do you think they should be putting their lives on the line - and paying £'000s for the privilege?

Because that's exactly what's happening and the government refuses to do anything about it.

It now looks as if the 'review' promised by Home Secretary Priti Patel into the punitive surcharge international health professionals have to pay for them and their families to use the NHS was not a review at all.

Let's take the example of Eva a senior, highly qualified RCN NHS nurse in Luton.

Eva faces the prospect of paying the £624 immigration surcharge fee six times, for her and her family members.

She has a 3-year visa. So it will cost more than £11,000 for her husband and her children to access the NHS. Upfront. 

Eva who has treated dozens of Covid-19 patients told ITV News: " You're always crossing your fingers that the day will end and your life will be spared". 

"I don't think it's fair," Ms Omondi told ITV News.

No Eva it isn't. In fact it defies not just our moral obligation to you and those like you from overseas who put their lives on the line. It makes no sense when the NHS is desperately short of nurses and doctors after more than 10 years of cutbacks. 

Or Carl Perez, 27, from the Philippines, who became ill with Covid-19 at the end of last month while working at a care home in the West Midlands where several residents have died from the illness. He is currently in isolation at home.

He told the Guardian: “It feels unfair that we are risking out lives on the frontline, and we are being penalised by having to pay this large sum out of our own pockets. We’re already paying for the NHS through our national insurance and tax,” he said. “It doesn’t leave much left for accommodation and living costs.”

It's now done to us: you and me to make them think again and do what's right. 

International health care workers are hurting. We want them to come to support our NHS but we ask them to pay for the privilege.

Health workers like Eva and Carl from outside the EU spend the years between visa renewals fretting, saving and borrowing to pay for the cost of their next permit. The sums are crippling, particularly for junior doctors in training and nurses. Often they fall into debt to pay the charges. Some of them simply leave the country once their permits are up for renewal, unable to find the money adding to the huge number of vacancies. 

This, in turn, rebounds on their British colleagues struggling to cope under punishing conditions after years of austerity. 

Which is madness. 

When Boris Johnson left hospital he praised in particular two NHS nurses one from Portugal one from New Zealand - immigrants - who sat by his bedside and watched over him every second of every hour for three days and nights in intensive care. They helped to save his life

 he government is happy to encourage us to stand outside every Thursday and clap in gratitude at the amazing work being done by doctors, nurses and care workers during - sometimes dying - but it's still not willing to back this with a meaningful gesture: hard cash.

Enough of the PR Prime Minister. Eva needs you step in and show that the British people are generous and fair-minded. Scrap the surcharge. Now. 

 



Today: Alain is counting on you

Alain Catzeflis needs your help with “How can we expect nurses like Eva to come to Britain and fill our NHS vacancies, risks her life when she has to pay £11,000 to use - the NHS? #scrapthesurcharge”. Join Alain and 3,027 supporters today.