The future of the fee for seafarer medicals is going out to consultation as the UK works to make sure it can offer the same long-term high-quality service as it does now.
Currently, the fee that seafarers or their employers pay is set by government and a review is being carried out to see how the charge for the service can be more flexible, so that doctors can recover their costs. The current fee is £115.
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency is reviewing how best to provide the seafarer medical service which may mean changing the way the fee is set. This way, the MCA can ensure the long-term future of its Approved Doctor network and make sure there are enough doctors available to carry out the medicals.
Katy Ware, Director of UK Maritime Services for the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (pictured below) said:
“We value highly the work of seafarers. They are the lifeblood of maritime and we must do all we can to take care of them and their welfare. That includes making sure they can get their medicals at a time and place that works best for them.
“We want to make sure there are enough doctors available and for that, we need to match the rate other Occupational Health services pay.
“This is part of an ongoing review into how best we can continue a vital service for seafarers’ medicals. No final decisions have been made and any proposals will be fully consulted on.”
The consultation starts today and lasts twelve weeks.