10.01.2023: Services of regular medical monitoring along with other logistical support provided to senior citizens on subscription basis, would be taxable at 18% GST: West Bengal AAR

The West Bengal Authority for Advance Ruling (AAR) in the case of Snehador Social & Health Care Support LLP vide Order No. 18/WBAAR/2022-23 dated 22.12.2022, has ruled that services of regular medical monitoring, along with other logistical support, provided by the applicant to senior citizens at their doorsteps, attract 18% GST.

The applicant is providing services for health care to senior citizens, which include arranging doctors and nurses, taking the clients to any diagnostic centre, and supplying oxygen and physical support as per the requirements of such senior citizens. The applicant runs a membership programme where clients opt for the services as per their requirements. The applicant also provides services to its members, such as the delivery of medicines and grocery items to their homes, help with bank work, utility bill payments, etc. There are three subscription packages which are provided by them in where senior citizens could enrol in a package best suited to their needs. The packages had an annual registration fee, a quarterly fee and a refundable security deposit.

The applicant has submitted that it aims to create a community where seniors can lead a physically and emotionally healthy and dignified life. The applicant provides services for accompanying members on essential and social outings, accompanying members to the bank and post office, organising social gatherings and entertainment programs, etc.

The applicant sought an advance ruling on the issue of whether the services rendered by the applicant for health care to senior citizens at their doorstep come under the exemption category and what will be the classification of such services.

The AAR has observed that supply by way of health care services qualifies for exemption if it is provided by a clinical establishment, an authorised medical practitioner, or paramedics. The applicant does not fall under any of the categories of suppliers, and the services provided by the applicant, therefore, fail to qualify as exempt services.

The GST-Authority for Advance Rulings (AAR) has held that a subscription-based elder care programme provided to senior citizens living alone — comprising medical check-ups at home and logistic support in terms of medicine & grocery deliveries, helping with bank work and utility bill payments — is not tax-exempt. Further, Services provided are not ‘health care services’ that are GST-exempt but are in the nature of ‘human health and social care services’ and would attract goods and services tax (GST) at 18%.

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