NHS crisis: If foreigners don't have health insurance we should send them home, says UKIP's Gerard Batten

'People should not be allowed to visit the UK without health insurance', says UKIP's Gerard Batten

NHS trusts will have to charge overseas patients upfront for non-urgent care

Monday, February 6, 2017

Visitors to the UK should be "sent back where they come from" if they don't have health insurance, UKIP MEP Gerard Batten has said.

Batten was speaking to Sam Delaney after health secretary Jeremy Hunt announced that NHS trusts will now have to check whether patients from overseas are eligible for non-urgent care and they will be charged for treatment upfront.

The new measures are designed to tackle so-called 'health tourism' and ease the pressure on the embattled health service.

Batten told Sam Delaney that he would go further, saying: “What we should do is say that any visitor to the country where we haven’t got a reciprocal arrangement has to have adequate health insurance.

“If they don’t have health insurance you sell it to them at the desk, and if they don’t buy it, you send them back to where they came from.

“I don’t see why you wouldn’t charge people for using a health service that they haven’t paid into."

Sam was rather cynical about Batten's claims, suggesting people can't just come to Britain and get operations on the NHS as the waiting lists are too long. 

Listen to the full interview above