Issues in the freedoms of British people residing in the EU to access the NHS

There will be many variations in healthcare systems in the event of a no-deal Brexit and one of the issues the freedoms of British people residing in the EU to access the NHS when they return home.

Of course, for most stuff, British people who have settled in Germany will normally use the German healthcare system.

But what if you become sick while visiting friends or families home in the United Kingdom or need therapy for a current illness?

European Health Insurance Cards (EHIC) have provided therapy on the NHS for Brits visiting the UK so far.

If Britain leaves with an agreement, then-current health cover rights, including the use of the European Health Insurance Cards, will continue until the end of the transition period. What will happen to the EHIC in the future will be agreed as part of the EU-UK future partnership agreements?

Recently, the British government modified its guidance stating that in the event of a no-deal Brexit: “If you live in Germany and are not presently qualified for a UK-issued S1 scheme (which includes British pensioners) or (a UK-issued) EHI, you should not expect to be prepared to use NHS facilities for free when touring the UK.”

If there is a no-deal, the British state claims that when they visit the UK, pensioners in Germany covered by the S1 scheme – for which the British state pays – will be allowed to use the NHS free of charge.

But there will be no protection for British people who are enrolled in the German health scheme and depend on their EHIC card when returning to the UK.