UK Health Services

The UK is home to the largest public health network in the world, called the National Health Service or NHS.

Students do receive access to free healthcare whilst studying in the UK, which is available 24 hours a day everyday of the year.

Upon arrival in the UK and registering with the University, you must register with a local Doctor called a General Practioner or GP.

GP (Doctor's) Surgery or Health Centre

A GP is in most cases your first point of contact when you have a medical problem. GPs can deal with most illnesses, but some cases may require further treatment by a specialist, who a GP will refer you to.

GCU London is linked with Holborn Medical Centre, enabling GCU London students to register with the practice quickly and easily and to access a full range of GP services, including general health care, sexual health and counselling. You will be able to register online via HMC's student health website.

You must register with a doctor near to where you live. To see a doctor, you must first make an appointment; most appointments last 15 minutes and you may discus one problem at a time.

You do not pay for consultations and treatments provided by a GP.

GP Surgeries are normally open during the week Monday to Friday. Some will be open into the evening and have limited weekend services, but check with your surgery for more information.

NHS 111

If you are feeling ill and it is out of normal GP hours, the NHS runs a phone line which provides information on what to do, or where and when to access services; this is called NHS 111. Simply call 111 on your phone.

Accident & Emergency (A&E)

Accident & Emergency departments are located at some but not all hospitals. These departments are open 24 hours a day and deal with serious cases.

If you need immediate medical treatment, call 999. This call is free and will go through even from locked phones. The call operator will ask which service you require (ambulance, fire or police). For medical cases, select ambulance services. The operator will ask information about exactly where you are, who's involved and what has happened. They will also ask about the condition of the patient and what to do until the ambulance arrives.

If you require emergency treatment but are able to travel, you can make your own way to an Accident & Emergency centre.


Treatment in the UK is free, however if the doctor prescribes you medicine this you will need to pay for. You will be given a prescription to take to the pharmacy who will issue you with the correct medicine. Some medicines are only available on prescription. Prescriptions are normally charged at around £8, even if there is more than one medicine on the prescription.