Guernsey Press

Insurance is a healthcare option

ANY news around discrimination tends to be big news nowadays. We must be careful that we don’t offend by what we say and what we do.


Is attempting to burden new arrivals to our islands with a health insurance policy discrimination? Or is it common sense, pragmatic and practical so to do?

That’s a question resting heavy in Guernsey and particularly Alderney at present, as politicians wrestle with the problem of increasing healthcare costs in old age.

There are concerns that compulsory health insurance for new arrivals over the age of 50 is apparently not being progressed ‘to avoid discrimination claims’. Though the States of Guernsey says that work is ongoing and that insurance ‘in some guise’ will play an important role in healthcare funding.

It surely makes sense that people contributing to the local exchequer over many decades should be prime candidates to avoid treatment queues, compared to those new to Guernsey and with no contribution record to speak of. Insurance can allow timely treatment at a cost which might seem reasonable for the new resident to bear.

Many would apply the same argument to long-term care – that the person who has scrimped and saved to buy a family home and build a nest egg could then risk losing that, while the individual largely supported by the state could continue to benefit from that in their old age.