Pregnant Eastern European women are flocking to Britain to have their babies in order to claim
Joseph Meiron Thomas, a former cancer surgeon, reportedly told the Commons Health Committee that women would register for child benefits after they gave birth so they could go back to Eastern Europe and receive the payments electronically.
Speaking to the MPs, Mr Thomas said: “What I’m told is people fill out the child benefit form, they get the child benefit, and then they go back to Eastern Europe where that child benefit will be paid for a long time.”
Hospitals in East Anglia were described as a hotspot, as Mr Thomas claimed migrants headed there to obtain a National Insurance number, before giving birth in local hospitals.
Shocking charts show the NHS could be in crisis Thu, February 9, 2017
Do these charts prove the NHS is in trouble?
Play slideshow Getty Images 1 of 9
According to the oncologist, 500 million EU citizens would be eligible for NHS treatment in Britain if they wished because they could easily claim they were "residents”.
Using the European Health Insurance Card scheme, EU travellers receive the right to access state-provided healthcare during a temporary stay in another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland.
But the former surgeon revealed the UK is paying five times as much as it receives back from the union towards that scheme.
Mr Meirion Thomas said: “I think the EHIC card has got to end with Brexit, because the pendulum is heavily weighed against the UK.
Jeremy Hunt said the problems in some parts of the NHS were “completely unacceptable”
“Anyone going from the UK to somewhere outside the European Union has got to have health insurance, what difference is it going to make if they have to [have health insurance if they] stay inside the European Union?
“So many people are buying it by the year anyway and it’s a fairly reasonable cost.”
The Public Accounts Committee has blasted NHS Trusts for not cracking down on health tourism, which can leave less cash to treat British people.