I would like to inform the House that, following further discussions between the Department and the Isle of Man Government, it has been agreed to defer the termination of the bilateral healthcare agreement between the UK and the Isle of Man by six months.
We have also agreed that the current 2009-10 financial allocation of £2.8 million given by the UK Government to the Isle of Man Government for elective treatment will be the last payment of this kind. From 2010-2011, no such payment will be made and no public money will change hands between the respective Governments. This new arrangement will bring the Isle of Man into line with other agreements that the UK has with a number of non-European economic area countries.
Both Governments have agreed to keep the situation under review with the expectation that it can form the basis of a new reciprocal healthcare agreement that would come into place in the autumn, if the new arrangement is working for both parties.
We believe that we have arrived at a position that not only provides the UK taxpayer with an agreement that represents value for money, but also ensures arrangements for travellers on temporary visits remain the same as they are today.