Stevens – Trump Brexit deal a threat to NHS and health - People's Vote

Stevens – Trump Brexit deal a threat to NHS and health

Donald Trump’s administration have published a summary of their negotiating objectives in a US-UK trade deal to follow Brexit.

These include:

(On “Procedural Fairness for Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices”): Seek standards to ensure that governmental regulatory reimbursement regimes are transparent, provide procedural fairness, are non-discriminatory, and provide full market access for U.S. products. 

  • In other words, an end to the NHS’s world-leading regime of controlling drug costs – long a target of US Big Pharma – and potentially the opening of the UK to US-style direct-marketing of drugs.


(On “Digital Trade in Goods and Services and Cross-Border Data Flows”): Establish state-of-the-art rules to ensure that the UK does not impose measures that restrict cross-border data flows and does not require the use or installation of local computing facilities. 

  • Meaning an end to restrictions on the shipping of personal data out of the UK/European Economic Area


(On “Trade in Goods”): Expand market access for remanufactured goods exports by ensuring they are not classified as used goods that are restricted or banned.

  • Potentially meaning that products now banned because they may contain material dangerous to human health – like asbestos fibres – are allowed to be sold in the UK


Responding, Jo Stevens MP, a leading supporter of People’s Vote, said:

“Donald Trump’s administration has now made it clear just what it will be demanding from the UK in return for a trade deal - and one of those things is that we let big US companies run riot in the NHS.

“One demand of the US is that the NHS pay more to US drug companies and that that US drug companies, the very corporations that have caused the opioids crisis in their home countries through reckless marketing and pressure on doctors, get full access to the NHS – long a demand from US mega-lobbyists in the pay of Big Pharma.

“On top of that the US government wants to destroy our world-leading data protection rules and allow drugs companies and big US health companies to ship personal data and our health overseas.

“And the hidden nasty is that the US government wants to end the ban on the resale of industrial goods and machinery currently banned in Europe as waste and where sale is prohibited because of the risk they may contain products such as asbestos which are totally banned in the UK but not subject to absolute restrictions in the US.

“All of this is just more evidence of how the PM’s Brexit deal will deliver the exact opposite of what was promised. British consumers will lose their rights and protections and the NHS will be turned into a playpen for huge US corporate interests.

“Now we know the real facts about what Brexit will mean, it is only fair to demand we have a real say about whether to go ahead.

“And that is why hundreds of thousands of people will be demanding that Brexit is put to the people on our march in Central London on March 23.”  



Notes to editors 

The US Government’s document can be read here: