On 1 March 2017, HSC introduced a new, more transparent fee system for the Emergency Department (ED).
Users of ED pay a basic 'Attendance, Assessment & Advice Only' fee, which is tiered according to the time they attend. During normal weekday office hours (8am to 6pm) this will be £55 for residents in receipt of the grant from Employment & Social Security, with costs higher for the evening and late night operational hours (reflecting the higher costs incurred to provide the service during these hours).
In addition to this basic fee, one of four defined tiers of 'Consultation Fee' will be added to the total service fee incurred by a user if specialist treatments/procedures are required. The categories reflect the different levels of resource that are required to effectively manage the healthcare issue presented by an ED user and might range from a simple bandage, to a very complex support care package, for example in respect of treating the often multiple clinical care issues relating to the effective treatment of a road traffic victim.
This charging structure puts in place a set fee (determined by one of the four Consultation Fee categories), which covers the cost of all the treatment an ED user requires.
The Consultation Fee Categories are made up of detailed lists of all the services that are provided or arranged by ED for service users to provide effective treatment. Common examples of care provision to illustrate the four different categories listed can be downloaded from this page along with worked examples of different ED treatment types to show the impact of the fee revisions made in March 2017.