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Afghan Relocation and Resettlement Schemes – Additional Guidance for Optometry Practices

8 October 2021

Individuals and families arriving in the UK under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (ARAP) scheme or Afghan citizens’ resettlement scheme (ACRS) will be entitled to free NHS care.

People supported by UK Visas and Immigration (UKV&I) under section 95 are issued with HC2 certificates, usually within 2 weeks of their arrival.

However, if the patient attends an optometry practice but has not yet received their HC2 certificate, the advice to the practice is as follows:

  • Do not refuse the eye care service, or see them as a private patient
  • Complete the GOS form as standard, recording the bridging hotel as the patient’s address
  • Tick ‘Universal credit’ as the eligibility criteria
  • Tick the ‘Evidence not seen’ option
  • Keep a note on the patient’s record that the eligibility category had been selected as per guidance from NHS England & NHS Improvement on submitting GOS claims for Afghan refugees

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