Brexit has major implications for health and social care in England. The King’s Fund updated long read explores the key issues for the health and care system covering
- Accessing treatment
- Cross-border co-operation
- Funding and finance
It concludes that, if freedom of movement and membership of the single market and customs union end when the UK leaves the EU, as currently planned under the Prime minister’s deal, then the NHS and social care face a number of significant threats.
- the potential impact on the health and social care workforces that rely considerably on staff who are EU nationals;
- the impact on future trading relationships, which could affect the affordability and supply of drugs and other products;
- and, of course, the impact on the wider economy, the performance of which will affect future funding for health and social care.
A no-deal scenario would have even more significant consequences for the health and social care system, compounding these threats and potentially causing significant disruption to medical supplies, a serious weakening of the UK’s ties with key EU bodies and information exchange about public health, and the end of reciprocal health agreements, leaving British citizens travelling to EU countries to take out private insurance and causing even more uncertainty for UK citizens living abroad.