Overseas visitor cost improvement programme


We have set up an overseas cost improvement programme providing intensive support to help trusts recover treatment costs from overseas patients, who are not eligible for free NHS care.

Our support offer

We have identified 50 acute trusts who will receive intensive support to recover costs from overseas visitors. As well as providing support we will also be looking to:

  • develop best practice models
  • achieve 95% of the potential cost recovery from overseas vistors
  • introduce further identification of European economic area patients with European Health Insurance Card (emergency) and S2 (known as planned care)
  • introduce the use of data funnelling techniques — to identify overseas chargeable patients
  • increase the collection of invoiced income — to reduce debt levels
  • develop our metrics including Model Hospital to increase the benefit and usage — for trusts reviewing its data

Please note: it is of paramount importance that the programme is delivered fairly. We will help ensure the charging regulations are implemented as intended, with urgent treatment neither delayed nor denied, and protections are in place for the most vulnerable.

This is a work-in-progress — as our programme of work develops we hope to include further resources to support the wider sector, offering the benefits from our learning. This will include examples of best practice, resources for mental health and community, case studies and videos.

Who is the programme for?

While the programme primarily focuses around acute trusts, mental health and community healthcare services are also in scope. We have already started our engagement with these groups and have a project officer assigned to developing the programme of work for these groups.  

Trusts can join the national overseas visitors trust community forum to learn from each other and ask questions. If you would like to join, please email nhscostrecovery@dh.gsi.gov.uk.

Who are we working with?

We are working with the Department of Health and Social Care, NHS England, NHS Digital and other key stakeholders to support the NHS obtain overseas visitor identification and to recover the costs.

If you would like support or advice, please contact nhsi.overseascostimprovement@nhs.net.

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