How Does The NHS Work For International Students?

It is important that all students register with a GP. We encourage you you to do this as soon as possible as you cannot predict when you are going to feel unwell. Being ill and away from home for the first time can be very stressful.

Students on courses of 6 months or more.

International students who are studying on a course of 6 months or more are eligible for full health care (excluding dental treatment) under the NHS. In addition if your spouse or/and children are resident in the UK with you as dependents they are also entitled to the same heath care service.

Students on courses of less than 6 months.

If your course is less than 6 months, but is at least 35% UK government funded you will qualify for free treatment subject to providing evidence of the funding.

If you do not meet the above criteria it is important that you take out medical insurance for you and your dependents from a reputable company. Medical insurance should be arranged for the duration of your stay as you will only be entitled to limited free NHS treatment.

What does the NHS provide free of charge?

If you are entitled to NHS treatment, the following will be free of charge:

  • Free consultation with your GP
  • Free hospital treatment in Accident and Emergency
  • Free hospital treatment if your GP recommends it
  • Free contraceptive services
  • Free maternity care

You will need to pay for

  • Medicines prescribed by your GP (referred to as prescription costs)
  • Some GP services (e.g. vaccinations for travel)