EHIC loophole to be reviewed in health tourism crackdown: Downing Street


The "completely unacceptable" abuse of a loophole allowing European migrants who have never paid tax in Britain to bill the NHS for treatment in their own countries will be examined as part of an ongoing crackdown against health tourism, Downing Street said. 

Foreign nationals who claim they are living in the UK are obtaining free European health insurance cards (EHIC) to charge the UK for care received in their homeland, a Daily Mail investigation revealed.

The Prime Minister's official spokeswoman said the report was "worrying" and a Department of Health review would examine the application process to receive an EHIC.

The spokeswoman said: "It is completely unacceptable that people living outside the UK without a genuine entitlement think that they can abuse the system in this way.

"The Department of Health has already been doing work to look at issues around health tourism and the abuse of the system by people from overseas, and they will now specifically look at is there more that needs to be done to tighten up how the EHIC system works and make sure that it is only given to people with a genuine entitlement."