NAT (National AIDS Trust) responds to the announcement in the Queen's Speech today that migrants will face further restrictions to accessing NHS services.
Deborah Jack, Chief Executive of NAT says "The Government has provided no evidence of the 'health tourism' which the restrictions on migrant access to the NHS outlined in today's Queen's Speech are meant to address. In relation to HIV treatment, we know that claims of 'health tourism' are completely unfounded. Our research has shown that migrants living with HIV are, on average, in the UK for five years before they are even diagnosed. Far from being motivated by a desire to access health services, the Government's own research found that asylum seekers did not have any detailed knowledge of the NHS before coming to the UK.
Yusef Azad, Director of Policy and Campaigns, comments on the Royal College of Nursing's statement for the need for better training for nurses to support a 'silent generation' of older people living with HIV.
"The Royal College of Nursing is right to raise the issue of better training for nurses with regard to HIV and ageing. Thanks to advances in HIV treatment, someone is diagnosed in good time and takes HIV treatment they can expect to have a normal life span. 25% of people with HIV are over 50. This means HIV care for an ageing population is increasingly an issue.