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The implications for Wales of Britain exiting the European Union

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The RCP in Wales has responded to the National Assembly for Wales External Affairs and Additional Legislation Committee inquiry into the implications for Wales of Britain exiting the European Union. 

Key recommendations

  • The UK and Welsh governments should prioritise action around the implications of Brexit on the health and social care workforce, medical research, public health and NHS finance. 
  • EU nationals working in the NHS must be able to stay in the UK and continue to deliver excellent care for patients.
  • The current workforce crisis facing the NHS must not be exacerbated by restricting non-UK doctors from working in the NHS.
  • Migration rules must not adversely impact on the supply of care workers.
  • The UK’s withdrawal from the EU must not affect patients’ ability to participate in high quality research and clinical trials. Patients must continue to access innovative new technologies.
  • Workforce pressures must not be allowed to have a negative effect on the time available to doctors to conduct clinical research. Restrictions on the mobility of researchers and clinicians may add further pressures.
  • The UK must retain access to FP9 funding, in addition to regional development funds, facilities and bursaries.
  • The UK must retain the ability to influence European legislation on research.
  • Frameworks that underpin health protection must be replaced by equivalent or even stronger safeguards.
  • The UK must have continued access to European structures and networks that provide effective surveillance of health threats.