Humza Yousaf: Ukrainian refugees to have immediate access to healthcare

Ukrainians fleeing the war in their homeland will be able to access healthcare and some benefits as soon as they arrive in Scotland.

Health Secretary Humza Yousaf explained the move was part of efforts to ensure that those fleeing the Russian invasion receive the “warmest welcome possible”.

An amendment to current legislation means that refugees from Ukraine will be able to access health care, including maternity care, mental health services and treatment for specific conditions at no charge while in Scotland.

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The Scottish Government has also stressed this will apply to people from Ukraine who were in Scotland on short term visas when the war began and have had to extend their stay as it is not safe for them to return home.

Free treatment and access to benefits: Humza YousafFree treatment and access to benefits: Humza Yousaf
Free treatment and access to benefits: Humza Yousaf

Emergency legislation has also come into force which will allow those coming to Scotland from Ukraine to meet the residency conditions to Scottish social security benefits.

This means those fleeing the war will be immediately able to claim payments such as the Scottish Child Payment and Child Disability Payment, if eligible for them.

Mr Yousaf said: “We are determined to do everything in our power to give displaced people from Ukraine the warmest welcome possible when they arrive and this includes offering healthcare to those who need it.

“We fully recognise that they may have been through very traumatic experiences and could require specialist treatment and care.

“Removing charges for healthcare and providing access to benefits is a practical step in ensuring those who have been forced to flee their homes and country can live safely and comfortably in Scotland for as long as they need to.”

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