Report: UK’s Free Health Coverage May Disappear Post-Brexit

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The U.K.’s decision to leave the European Union may cause you to lose access to free health insurance in Europe, according to a parliamentary report. Post-Brexit, those living in the country and abroad would find themselves stripped of their reciprocal health care rights because of the separation.

Members of Parliament (MPs) on the health select panel gained evidence that Britons seeking treatment for diseases, particularly cancer, may face higher costs in countries included in the European Economic Area.

Expensive Healthcare

The report cited travellers as the most vulnerable to the impact of Brexit on their health insurance. What’s more, pensioners that migrated to France now worry about the impact of Brexit to their coverage, while British expats working in other European countries are also at risk for losing reciprocal healthcare rights.

For instance, if you are suffering from depression or diabetes and you plan to go on vacation in France, a fully private health insurance for one week may cost you between £800 and £2,500, according to Prof Martin McKee of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

No Worries in Dental Sector

The dental industry, however, brushed aside fears of an escalated cost of oral health care due to Brexit. Market conditions still determine the cost of procedures such as dental implant treatment, as clinics endeavour to maintain price tags lower.

Collapsing Morale

Due to the referendum vote,an estimated 150,000 European professionals working for the National Health Service (NHS) now face uncertain prospects for their residency in the U.K.

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The report says the NHS will suffer a huge loss of talent if the government does not act soon on guarantees for their residency and sickness insurance. A secure residency arrangement for European workers is necessary, especially since the U.K. will need more doctors.

Brexit is bringing uncertainty for the future of healthcare insurance in the U.K. Do you think costs will increase and more workers will depart because of the “leave” vote?