Romanian, Bulgarian migrants look to take advantage of health care system
San Francisco, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 02/05/2013 -- A new measure that was created to dissuade Romanian and Bulgarian citizens from entering the United Kingdom may see EU migrants being prevented from utilizing Britain's National Health Service.
Immigration minister Mark Harper and indicated that migrants that do not possess a job may be blocked from using the National Health Services and will be forced to hold private health insurance.
The government is considering further measures regarding whether to deport migrants who do not find a job within three months.
"EU students and those that are self-sufficient should not be a burden on the host member state, which means they should have things like health insurance. We have a National Health Service, not an international health service," Harper said.
Harper discussed the situation in the context of a British debate on what to do in order to handle the influx of Bulgarian and Romanian migrants. The two Eastern-Euro countries joined the EU in 2007 along with many other countries, including Britain. By joining, rules were set that limited their right to live and work within the EU as they pleased. However, the rules will expire at the end of 2013 and there is no mechanism set in place to renew them.
"The issue here is around dealing with potential damage to the UK's labor market and potential scope for curbing immigration to that end," said a spokesperson for Prime Minister David Cameron.
The spokesperson added "we're in the process of considering what we may be able to do. Clearly there is a European legal framework within which we have to operate. Clearly there may be some areas where we may want to cooperate with other member states."
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