Health Care in the UK
When preparing to come to the UK, you should bring copies of any immunisation certificates with you as well as any medical information.
You may be required to undergo a health screening on arrival at UK airports if you arrive from a region where some infectious diseases may thrive and you are not able to provide evidence of immunisation.
Typically, you should be immunised against:
- Diphtheria, tetanus and polio (within the last 10 years)
- Meningitis C
- Tuberculosis (In many countries you will now need to show proof of TB screening when you apply for your visa)
- Measles, mumps and rubella
General Information About The NHS
The National Health Service (NHS) provides a universal service for all. Students enrolled on courses lasting longer than six months are entitled to free treatment. If you plan to enrol for less than six months then it is advisable to arrange private medical insurance.
A consultation with a doctor or nurse is free. If you are given a prescription then you will need to pay for the medicine at the pharmacist. Charges are also made for dental and optical checks, and standard prescription items. If you have a pre-existing medical condition it is advisable to bring a copy of your medical notes with you to the UK. The doctor will then be able to assist as necessary.
Further information on health issues in the UK can be found at the UKCISA website.
One important aspect to remember is that the Health Service on offer may operate to a different standard to the one in your home country and that you should not expect to find exactly the same services in the UK. For example, some students who are prone to coughs and colds are surprised to find that influenza vaccines (‘flu jabs’) are not generally available on demand from the University Medical Centre.
When thinking about visiting an optician or a dentist in the UK, you should be aware that these are not free services and that you may wish to wait to return to your own country before starting substantial treatment programmes.
During the enrolment process you may register with the University Medical Centre. Some students living off campus will need to register with a medical centre near to where they live; others, depending on how close they live to the Uxbridge campus, may be able to register with the University Medical Centre. If you wish to find a local Doctor or “General Practioner” for your area, you can use this website.
If you have an emergency, which occurs outside of University Medical Centre hours, then the Hayes Medical Centre will see people from 8am to 8pm (7 days a week) even if you are not registered with the NHS.