Zero Rating Ends on PPE

9 November 2020

Liaison Financial

HM Treasury has confirmed that it has now ended the VAT zero rating on personal protective equipment (PPE) as of 1st November 2020. However social care and primary care providers are now able to source their PPE requirements free of charge via designated Government portal.

The initial measure, to remove VAT from all PPE purchases, was created in response to the COVID-19 crisis and ran between 1st May and 31st October 2020. It benefitted all consumers, including the general public and those requiring PPE for the workplace, as well as frontline NHS workers and care home staff.

A report in the Guardian estimates that the total saving to care homes and companies equates to more than £300m over six months as a result of the measure.

NHS bodies will have to continue to source and pay for their own PPE and will incur VAT from 1st November. However, given the Government’s undertaking to fund all NHS Covid-19 related costs, this shouldn’t result in a cost to the NHS in overall funding terms.

It will mean an increase in costs for the PPE sold directly to patients and their families via vending machines or onsite shops, which comes via consumer channels. With handy vending machines becoming more popular on NHS sites, in order to ensure all visitors have face coverings, prices will need adjusting accordingly in order to reflect the VAT increase.

If your NHS organisation requires further information on this, please speak to your Liaison Financial VAT Advisor, or contact us at