How will Brexit affect my entitlement to healthcare?

The impact of Brexit on your healthcare coverage depends on your situation. If you were living or working in Netherlands or the UK before 1 January 2021, nothing will change for you. If you moved to the Netherlands or the United Kingdom on or after 1 January 2021, new rules apply.

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Living or working in the UK or the Netherlands before 1 Januari 2021

  • You are a Dutch national already living or working in the UK before 1 January 2021 or 
  • You are a British national living or working in the Netherlands before 1 January 2021

Nothing changes for you. You can continue living and working as before, but you may need to arrange certain things to ensure you can do this.

As long as your situation does not change, your health insurance arrangements will remain the same. This means that if you are currently covered by the NHS in the UK, you will continue to be. The same applies for British nationals in the Netherlands in terms of Dutch health insurance coverage. If you have Dutch health insurance coverage now, you will continue under this system in the future.

Entitlement to urgent medical care during short stays

Dutch nationals in the UK for short stays (such as holidays) are entitled to urgent medical care there.  If you are a British national in the Netherlands, you are entitled to urgent medical care during short stays in the Netherlands, such as holidays. 

Living or working in the UK or the Netherlands from 1 Januari 2021

  • You are a Dutch national already living or working in the UK from 1 January 2021 or 
  • You are a British national living or working in the Netherlands from 1 January 2021

Your rights are governed by the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement. This agreement sets out that, in many cases, healthcare remains protected as part of social security coverage. But the arrangements are different from what you may be used to and provisions are more restrictive on some points. 

Check your residency status

On 1 January 2021 free movement of persons between the EU and the UK ceased. This means that the possibilities for Dutch nationals to become long-term residents of the UK are more limited than they were previously. The same applies to British nationals who wish to become long-term residents of the Netherlands.

Please note: the following arrangements establishing healthcare as part of social security coverage only apply if you have residence rights. As the free movement of persons has ceased, the UK and Dutch authorities will first have to assess whether you have residence rights.

  • If you are a British national resident in the Netherlands or a Dutch national resident in the UK: the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement sets out arrangements for EU nationals in the UK and British nationals in the EU. Under these arrangements, you may require an employment permit and/or a residence permit. In such situations healthcare entitlements, including the right to medical treatment, are protected. However, the protections are not as extensive as before.
  • If you are a British national in the UK or an EU citizen in the UK on a temporary, short-stay basis (for instance on holiday): the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement sets out arrangements for EU citizens in the UK and British nationals in the EU on a temporary basis. In such a situation, residency status plays no role.
    If you are in the UK for a short stay, you still have a right to urgent and essential healthcare in the UK. For instance, if you have an accident and need to go to hospital.