NHS Spending

Part of EU Nationals in the Uk – in the House of Commons at 6:12 pm on 6th July 2016.

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Photo of Jeremy Hunt Jeremy Hunt The Secretary of State for Health 6:12 pm, 6th July 2016

I am sure that that is analysis we can do, but I cannot do it at the Dispatch Box as a direct response to the hon. Gentleman. However, as I am sure he is well aware—we made this point during the whole Brexit referendum debate—we have reciprocal health arrangements with other EU countries at the moment. Those are immensely convenient to people travelling to and visiting other European countries, because they mean those people can access healthcare completely free of charge. The bill is actually sent to the Government, and that arrangement includes pensioners who have retired to Spain and France and Italy as well. It would be very sad if, as a result of the new relationship with the EU, we lost that convenience. That is one of the reasons why I am confident that other EU countries will be happy for British pensioners to remain in them. As long as those countries are able to charge us for the healthcare costs, the burden to them should be minimal.