- Letter to Editor:-
EXPATRIATE VICTIMS OF THE NATIONAL HEALTH SERVICE
Dear Southport Reporter,
"IT is estimated that more than one million Britons have
retired abroad of which 650,000 have settled on Spain's
Mediterranean coasts, with France being second choice and the
Republic of Ireland taking up third place. One of the attractions of
retiring abroad, apart from the weather, is Spain's superior health
service. As this is free of charge to British expatriates anyway
there is little incentive for them to return and seek treatment in
England even when they don't have to pay.
The new rules banning British expatriates from receiving free health
care on Britain's National Health Service is not expected to cause
undue concern on the Spanish Costas. Those effected will mostly be
the retired who rarely return to the United Kingdom anyway.
I didn't expect the Government's decision to effect sales of
properties abroad. Last year when the idea was first mooted. The
National Association of Developers and Foreign Residents in Spain
announced that investment in Spanish property had increased by 30
But it just seems a little unfair that Britons who have worked and
have contributed to the National Health Service are denied a return
on their health investment. They will be lumped together with real
foreigners who have never paid a penny into the system."
Michael McLaughlin of Kensington-based Southern Comfit Properties
If you have any views on this and other matters, email our editor at
RAC'S 'END OF TERM' TRANSPORT REPORT SHOWS IMPROVING PICTURE FOR UK'S 28
67% OF motorists believe
Government should do more to improve road transport as 2003 came to
a close. The UK's 28 million motorists have experienced a huge
number of new initiatives and pieces of motoring related legislation
in 2003, some of which have started to have an impact on our daily
experiences behind the wheel. Motoring organisation RAC has assessed
some of the major initiatives to determine whether or not the road
transport picture has improved during 2003.
The good news is that overall RAC's assessment is positive for the
UK's motorists, despite the fact that they are often portrayed as "beleaguered"
and "overly taxed". The bad news is
that the critical problem of chronic congestion was not been
addressed in any palpable way during 2003, and that any policies
dealing with it have yet to bear real fruit.
RAC spokesperson Rebecca Bell said:- "The UK's motorists
have taken some financial pain in 2003 with an increase in fuel duty
and a new dawn breaking with road user charging. Overall though,
many of the Government led initiatives must be viewed individually
separately as promising.
The main problem remains, though, that our motorists are the highest
taxed in Europe and yet suffer the longest journey times,
particularly while commuting. The failure of the 10 year plan to
address congestion and achieve success where radical improvements
are needed means that many motorists would mark the Government's
performance on transport in 2003 with a resounding "Must do
better in 2004!""
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