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Brexit - what it means for the medical profession

The BMA has been working to safeguard the future of the medical profession and the patients we serve following the UK's vote to leave the European Union on 23 June 2016.

As the UK's leading voice in representing doctors and medical students, the BMA must be involved in consultations that affect the profession and patients during the negotiations to leave the EU. We are raising key priorities for health which should be central to the negotiations, including:

  • the retention and recruitment of EU staff
  • mutual recognition of professional qualifications
  • science and research
  • health and safety legislation
  • public health protection and procurement.


ARM 2018 motion on Brexit

At our annual representative meeting in June 2018, doctors made clear their worries that Brexit poses a major threat to the NHS and the nation’s health.

Whilst we acknowledge there has been some progress in the negotiations, the challenges and the risks to the NHS posed by Brexit remain considerable. As raised in our Brexit briefings, there is too much uncertainty around the implications of Brexit for patients, doctors and health services. 

Given what we now know about the potential impact of Brexit on the NHS and the nation’s health, and the dangers a 'no deal' Brexit presents for the NHS, the BMA's ARM voted in June to change our policy to opposition to Brexit.

The full text of the motion supported by doctors at our conference is as follows:

That this meeting notes the concerns raised in the "BMA Brexit briefings" also notes that the BMA is non-partisan but that there is a plurality of opinions within political parties on Brexit.

We call on the BMA to:

I. Support the UK remaining in the European single market

II. Support open border arrangements with free movement of healthcare and medical research staff

III. Support the UK remaining a member of Euratom to ensure the protection of supply of radioisotopes

IV. Support the early adoption of the European Clinical Trials Regulation in the UK

V. Publicly announce that it is concerned that Brexit poses a major threat to the NHS and the nation's health

VI. Support the idea of the public having a final say on the Brexit deal, now that more is known regarding the potential impact of Brexit on the NHS and the nation's health

VII. Oppose Brexit as a whole


Our Brexit work