UK News 24 – ( LBR – Sky ).
LONDON – New figures show the NHS is paying out millions more for EU healthcare than it is claiming back from EU countries.
In what one MP described as a “scandalous failure”, it has emerged that the UK pays more than £670m to EU countries for Brits’ healthcare abroad, while claiming back less than £50m from the EU, even though there are significantly more EU citizens in the UK than UK citizens in the EU.
Under the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) – countries can claim back health costs from other EU countries if their citizens use medical services abroad.
The new figures reveal that nearly every country claims more from the UK than the UK claims back from the rest of the EU.
For example the UK pays France £147,685,772, but France only pays UK £6,730,292 and the UK pays Germany £25,873,954 but Germany only pays the UK £2,189,664.
Even in countries such as Poland where net migration is massively towards the UK, the discrepancy is four-fold in Poland’s favour.
MP John Mann, who obtained the figures in a parliamentary question, told news agencies that “logically the UK should be receiving more than it pays out”.
He estimates “the real cost is a billion pounds a year”.
Mr Mann told news agencies : “Other countries are recharging and we are not.
“The figures are astonishing – we are paying them 70 times more than they are paying us.
“We are paying our bills and they are not paying theirs – because the British NHS is not recharging them.
“There is meant to be a comparable system in place – but it is not being applied in this country and that means we are losing out.
“Every single country is winning against us, be it the super-efficient Swedes or Germans, or countries like Malta or Greece.
“It’s a huge scandal.”
Mr. Mann told News agencies :”There are over half a million Poles in this country and yet we are paying four times more to Poland for health care recharges, than they pay to us.
“The NHS is losing out on huge amounts of money every single week.”
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