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All forms of Brexit will negatively impact the UK National Health Service (NHS), but the prospect of a no-deal Brexit presents by far the worst scenario, with negative effects on the health care workforce, NHS financing, availability of medicines and vaccines, sharing of information, and medical research, according to a new health policy review published in The Lancet and co-authored by Oxford's Dr Nick Fahy.

Hospital Staff In Busy Lobby Area Of Modern Hospital © Shutterstock

While the withdrawal agreement negotiated between the UK government and the EU (but not agreed by parliament) offers a more positive scenario compared with a no-deal Brexit, there are serious concerns about the negative impact of Brexit on the NHS beyond the transition period, when the backstop or arrangements envisaged in the political declaration on the future relationship would come into force.

Under either the backstop or political declaration scenarios, the impact of Brexit on the NHS is only slightly less harmful than the no-deal scenario, though the exact impacts vary.

In the new analysis, the authors, who are leading experts in public health and law, use the available legal and political texts on four Brexit scenarios to assess the likely impact on 15 specific aspects of the UK health service.

Read more (University of Oxford website)

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