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Petition calls for UK to guarantee pensioners' healthcare in Spain and other EU countries post-Brexit
18 July 2016 @ 17:06

ANOTHER 'Brexit petition' has started on the UK government's website calling for British authorities to commit to healthcare arrangements for its retired citizens living in EU member States, including Spain.

So far, the petition - which has only just been launched - has netted 3,340 signatures, but it needs 10,000 before the UK government is obliged to respond, and 100,000 before it is required to debate the issue in Hansard.

Now, it is gradually finding its way around social networks as signatories repost it after adding their names.

Currently, in Spain in particular, any British national in receipt of a State pension from the UK or over State retirement age is entitled to use the medical services free of charge, with prescriptions payable at discounted rates up to a maximum of €8 a month.

The British government pays Spain €4,200 a year per head to cover, or at least help towards the bulk of, its pensioners' healthcare in Spain, since they are EU citizens living in another of the 28 member States.

This does not apply to British pensioners living in non-EU countries, who knew when they emigrated that they would need to ensure they could afford medical insurance.

Knowing they were covered by the joint arrangement through their country of origin and of residence through their EU citizenship, few pensioners bought health insurance when they moved to Spain - whilst insurance to fund private healthcare in the UK has always meant better-quality and quicker service with no waiting lists, Spain's health service ranks second from top in Europe and waiting lists are very short compared with those of Britain's NHS.


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