HC Deb 10 November 1970 vol 806 cc78-9W
61. Mr. Robert Hughes

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what steps are being taken by Her Majesty's Government to conclude arrangements with the Governments of foreign countries to enable British citizens abroad to have medical treatment if and when they become ill on a foreign visit.

78. Mr. James Hamilton

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he will take steps to publicise the countries with which the United Kingdom does not have reciprocity so far as health benefits are concerned; and if he will take steps to advise travellers that it is in their best interests to be insured until agreement on reciprocity is reached.

Mr. Alison

In addition to existing arrangements with Bulgaria, Denmark, Norway, New Zealand, Poland, Sweden and Yugoslavia, proposals for reciprocal agreements which would include provision for the medical treatment of British visitors and tourists are currently under consideration with several other European countries. We already take every opportunity to warn people proposing to travel abroad that it is important that they should insure themselves adequately against the need to obtain medical treatment in those countries with which we do not at present have reciprocal agreements. This advice is given in the booklet "Essential Information" which is issued to every applicant for a passport in the United Kingdom and is also regularly publicised through travel agencies, through press, television and radio and by posters exhibited in doctors' surgeries and elsewhere.