- Can I get free treatment?
- What do I need to do to get medical help in the UK?
- Is there a medical centre on campus?
- What medical help does my doctor provide?
- What do I do when the University Medical Centre is closed?
- Where else can I go for medical help?
- Do I need to pay for prescriptions?
- Do I need to pay for eye treatment?
- What if I needed dental treatment?
- What about healthcare for my family?
- Tips for keeping healthy
- Common illnesses - colds and flu
- If you are on a course lasting six months or more:
- You can get free treatment from the National Health Service (NHS) whatever your nationality or immigration status.
- The free treatment includes free examination and hospital treatment from the beginning of your stay.
- Remember to register with a GP as soon as possible.
- There is no need to obtain health insurance.
- If you are on a course of less than six months:
- You should take out private health insurance, unless you are the national of a country that has a reciprocal health agreement with the UK.
- However, reciprocal health agreements do not cover illnesses which you had before coming to the UK.
- For further information on reciprocal agreements contact the
health authority in your home country.
- If you are an EU/EEA/Swiss national on courses of less than six months: Get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) from your own national health authority before leaving home – this provides treatment for all illnesses. Without an EHIC you are not covered for illnesses which you had before coming to the UK.
- First you need to register with a doctor, known in the UK as a General Practitioner (GP), before you are treated.
- To see your doctor telephone for an appointment.
- If you are very ill call-in. If it is an emergency, call 999 (emergency services) or 666 (on campus) or go to the Accident and Emergency part of the hospital.
- Most GPs also have an on-call service, so that you can contact a doctor 24 hours a day. Check with your GP surgery for more information.
- Women can ask to see a female doctor.
- If you require specialist medical help from a hospital consultant, you need to be referred by your GP.
Yes. The University Medical Centre on campus is open Monday to Friday, 08:00 - 18:00 and Saturday 08:00 - 13:00. Appointments (known as surgeries) are usually held between 09:00 and 17:00.
Tel: 01225 386655, or extension 6655 from campus.
To register, call in person at the medical centre and fill in a registration form or download one from the Medical Centre website.
- Most illnesses and other problems can be treated by the GP.
- If your doctor thinks you need medicine he/she will give you a prescription. Take this to a chemist who will give you the medicine and explain how to take it.
- GP appointments are short in the UK - about 5 - 10 minutes. The GP will refer you to the hospital/specialist doctor if necessary.
- When the Medical Centre is closed call Bath Emergency Medical Service (BEMS) on 03000 339933. BEMS is at Riverside Health Centre, James St West, by Sainsbury’s car park.
- For general health advice and information, call NHS Direct: 0845
This is a 24 hour nurse-led advice line.
- For advice or treatment of minor illness and simple injuries there is a local walk-in centre at Riverside Health Centre (Tel: 01225 478811), James St West, by Sainsbury’s car park. They are open 08:00-20:00 daily.
- If you live off-campus and/or have your family with you, you may prefer to find a doctor off campus. To find one visit the NHS Direct website.
Many medicines are only available on prescription in the UK.
- Patients usually have to pay for prescriptions when they take them to the pharmacy.
- Some people qualify for free prescriptions – ask at the Medical Centre or your GP for form HC1.
If you live on campus you can arrange for your prescriptions to be processed at a local pharmacy and delivered to the University Medical Centre, where you can collect them. Ask at the Medical Centre if you wish to use this service.
- There is a charge for eye tests and you pay for spectacles or contact lenses.
- Help with the cost of eye tests and glasses may be available; apply using form HC1 (available at the Medical Centre or your GP surgery) before any treatment takes place.
- If you are under 19 in full-time education you will get free eye tests and vouchers for spectacles.
- Dental treatment is available either privately or on the NHS, which is cheaper.
- You must be resident in the UK for over 6 months to be eligible for NHS treatment.
- You don’t need to register with a dentist until you need dental treatment.
- To find your nearest dentist visit: www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk
- If you require urgent dental treatment - ring the regional Dental Advice Line - on 08451 20 66 80. They will try to get you an appointment on the same day at a local dentist.
- All adults over the age of 19 have to pay for dental treatment unless they have an exemption certificate such as a HC2.
- The Dental Centre on campus is currently not taking more patients.
- If you are an EU/EEA/Swiss National on a course of 6 months or more: you and your family can receive free treatment from the National Health Service (NHS).
- All other Students on courses of 6 months or more:
- Your partner and children under 16 (under 19 if still at school or college) can get free treatment from the NHS.
- Register with a GP as soon as possible after you arrive in the UK – don’t wait until you are ill.
- If you are an EU/EEA/Swiss National on a course of less than 6 months:
- We advise you to get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) before leaving home so you can have treatment on the NHS.
- If you do not have an EHIC you cannot get treatment for illnesses you had before coming to the UK.
- All other Students on courses of less than 6 months:
- You may be covered by a reciprocal healthcare agreement between your home country and the UK.
- If you are not covered by a reciprocal agreement then you and your family are only entitled to limited free NHS treatment.
- You will have free emergency hospital treatment, but only the treatment given in a NHS Accident and Emergency department is free of charge.
- It is therefore very important that you take out medical insurance for the duration of your visit to the UK.
- Dental treatment:
- Children under the age of 16, or under 19 and in full-time education, are automatically eligible for free dental treatment.
- Those who are pregnant or have had a baby within the last twelve months are also eligible.
A new climate, unfamiliar food and the emotional stress of being away from home can all affect your health:
- It is vital to eat the right food, and enough of it, in order to stay healthy.
- You may be cooking for yourself for the first time, and may not find this easy.
- Food plays a surprisingly large part in helping us feel settled and happy, so spend a bit of time finding out what food suits you.
Colds and influenza (known as ’flu) are common in the UK, particularly during the winter months.
Treatment doesn’t really help but see your doctor if symptoms persist for longer than 2 weeks or you have symptoms such as a stiff neck, severe headache, shortness of breath, coughing up blood or persistent vomiting.
- Get plenty of rest and drink plenty of non-alcoholic fluids.
- Ask a pharmacist about the best medicine for you.
- If you are in doubt contact your doctor.