GP appointments and other health services made free for under-18s in Jersey

Jersey's government will now foot the bill for all young people's GP appointments and extra services such as blood tests. Credit: Pixabay

GP appointments and other health services are being made free for all under-18s in Jersey.

The island's government has said it will cover the costs of all face-to-face, video and phone consultations with GPs, nurses, paramedics, pharmacists and healthcare assistants.

It will also pay for some extra services such as blood tests, ear syringing and pregnancy tests.

However, home visits and the out-of-hours service will still be charged as normal.

It follows an announcement in June that saw the cost of GP appointments cut by £20 across the board to help with the cost of living crisis.

"This is the latest in a series of schemes which have been introduced to make primary care services more accessible and invest in the health and well-being of islanders," the Social Security Minister, Deputy Elaine Millar explained.

The change was proposed by Deputy Carina Alves and passed last December by 24 votes to 22 in the States Assembly. Most government ministers voted against its introduction.

The subsidies are being financed through the island's Health Insurance Fund and it is expected to help around 15,000 young people aged 17 and under.

The current Health Access Scheme which helps cover costs for people living on a low income will run alongside this new initiative.

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