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British expats living in the EU will have to fund their own treatment in event of No Deal

British expats living in the EU are told to get health insurance because the NHS won’t fund their treatment after a No Deal Brexit

  • Ministers told last week expats should be urgently advised to take out insurance
  • Health Secretary Matt Hancock scurrying to make deals with Spain and France
  • But as things stand, British nationals will not be covered for the cost of treating conditions such as cancer diagnosed after March 29

British nationals living in EU countries who fall ill after a No Deal Brexit will be forced to pay for their own treatment, the Government’s ‘doomsday committee’ has warned.

Ministers were told last week that UK citizens should be urgently advised to take out private health insurance if they are resident in European countries. 

With just six weeks to go until Brexit Day, Health Secretary Matt Hancock is frantically trying to seal a series of reciprocal arrangements with countries such as Spain and France to cover the medical bills of citizens living abroad. 

Details were set out by the Government in the latest tranche of ‘no deal notices’ published to give details on what might happen if Britain crashes out on March 29. 

A no deal Brexit will mean ‘EHIC’ (European Health Insurance Cards) that guarantee access to healthcare in the EU and other European countries will cease to be valid. 

If Theresa May’s deal is agreed by MPs, it automatically rolls over the EHIC system for the Brexit transition – meaning nothing should change until at least January 1, 2021.  

British nationals living in EU countries who fall ill after a No Deal Brexit will be forced to pay for their own treatment

Health Secretary Matt Hancock is frantically trying to seal a series of reciprocal arrangements with countries such as Spain and France to cover the medical bills of citizens living abroad

Health Secretary Matt Hancock is frantically trying to seal a series of reciprocal arrangements with countries such as Spain and France to cover the medical bills of citizens living abroad

It means that as things stand, British nationals will not be covered for the cost of treating conditions such as cancer diagnosed after March 29. 

What are the no deal Brexit plans which have been enacted?

Here are the emergency no deal plans which have been activated: 

Some 3,500 troops are on standby for no deal Brexit 

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said the troops could be used by any department as needed – but that no specific requests had yet been made for them. 

Ministers will book space on ferries to ensure critical supplies,  such as medicines,  can get in if there are long queues at the borders 

Families are to to be given advice on how to prepare for a no deal Brexit

Up to 10,000 lorries could be parked in Kent if no deal causes delays at the ports  

The Kent authorities have warned that the gridlock could mean pupils miss school and exams, while bodies could pile up

Nor will they be allowed to fly back and have treatment on the NHS if they are deemed resident in another country. NHS cuts in 2015 banned people resident abroad from using hospitals at home for free. 

But if a Briton is living in an EU country and already being treated for a condition such as cancer, the EU government will continue to pay for the treatment.

Britain needs to strike new deals with individual countries if there is not an EU-wide agreement.

A deal was finalised with Switzerland this week but major EU states home to millions of Britons – particularly France and Spain – cannot meaningfully begin as they are negotiating as part of the EU.  

The 21-member EU exit and trade (preparedness) ‘doomsday’ committee was established by Theresa May ‘to streamline the process to oversee the delivery of plans for an orderly exit from the EU’.

It includes all secretaries of state for departments involved in Brexit planning, as well as Chief Whip Julian Smith and Attorney General Geoffrey Cox. 

A Health Department spokeswoman said: ‘Our priority is to ensure UK nationals living or working in the EU can continue to access the healthcare they need as we exit the EU.

‘The Government is working closely with countries, including Spain and France, to make sure patients can continue to access healthcare, whatever the outcome.’

As things stand, British nationals will not be covered for the cost of treating conditions such as cancer diagnosed after March 29 (file image)

As things stand, British nationals will not be covered for the cost of treating conditions such as cancer diagnosed after March 29 (file image)

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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