A report, published today, by the Nuffield Trust, suggests that when reciprocal health arrangements within Europe end, post Brexit, the cost to the NHS could be as much as an extra £500m each year as expats return to the UK for medical treatment.
Currently, if all expat pensioners returned to the UK for medical treatment, the cost to the UK taxpayer would be in the region of £967m, which is about half of what it currently costs the UK to reimburse European governments.
An influx of pensioners back into the UK would also put pressure on hospital beds resulting in the need for another 900 beds. This would also put additional stress on staff.
Mark Dayan, Policy and Public Affairs Analyst at the Nuffield Trust said “It is possible that extra funds could be found for the NHS from any cancellation of Britain’s EU membership fees – but whether or not these benefits will outweigh the significant staffing and financial costs Brexit may impose on already stretched services remains to be seen.”
What do you think about this news? Are you, or someone in your family, an expat and are concerned? Let us know what you think in the comments box below.