Pregnant women in the United Kingdom could soon be asked to show their passports before they give birth in National Health Service (NHS) hospitals.
This could come into force as the UK seeks to crackdown on health tourism.
Mothers-to-be will have to prove they have the right to use health service facilities under a scheme being piloted by St George’s University Hospitals Foundation in south London.
The trust said the problem of maternity tourism was escalating at St George’s and hospitals across the country and the trial is part of a UK-wide effort to ensure proof of ID is routinely presented before patients access care.
NHS trusts are already supposed to charge non-EU patients for healthcare costs unless they have lived in the UK long enough to qualify for treatment.
But there have been limited attempts to pursue costs of maternity care with bills sent after the birth often going unpaid.
Under the new proposals, women will have to prove their right to use the NHS when they register for maternity care.