What Health Services Are Free For Students In The Uk?

There are loads of things to organise when you go to university, and taking care of your health should be a priority, especially if you live far from home.


Take a look at this list if you want to discover a few ways to save on healthcare essentials while studying in the UK:


  1. Registering with a GP


If, like most students, you spend more time at your new student address, consider registering with a new GP near your university.  These consultations are free of charge for NHS patients and for temporary patients (someone who is in the area for more than 24 hours and less than 3 months).


You can also receive emergency treatment in other practices if you are not staying near your university GP.


  1. Register with a dentist


Dentists are not a free service, but if you are under 19 years old and studying full time you may be eligible to receive free NHS dental treatments. If you are older than 19, don’t worry, as you can also apply to the NHS Low Income Scheme, and you might qualify for free dental treatment.


Try to register with a dentist as soon as you arrive at your student city. You don’t want wisdom teeth to ruin your week!


  1. Prescriptions


Prescriptions are free up to the age of 18. After that, you will need to pay the full amount of £9.15 per item. However, there are a few exemptions:


  • If you qualified for the NHS Low Income Scheme and you have an HC2 certificate, they may also be free for you for up to 12 months.
  • If you think that you will need prescriptions regularly, there is a way of saving money with a prescription prepayment certificate (PPC). For £105.90 a year, you can get as many prescriptions as you need with no extra charge. That’s more or less the equivalent of buying one prescription a month, so if you need more than one, you are saving serious cash!


  1. Contraception and STI test


You can get your choice of contraception for free from some GPs and sexual health clinics. Also, you can get a sexually transmitted infections (STI) test for free, and we highly recommend getting tested every six months -depending on how sexually active you are-.


The medicines supplied at a hospital or clinic for the treatment of STI’s is also free.


Where can you get the morning after pill for free?


You can buy morning-after pills from most pharmacies, but it won’t be cheap. These will cost between £25 and £35. But don’t worry.


There are places where you can get your morning-after pill for free. These include:


  • Contraception clinics
  • Brook centres
  • Most GP surgeries
  • Most NHS walk-in centres and sexual health clinics
  • Some pharmacies


EU students & Brexit


If you are a student from the EU and were living in the UK before the 31st of December of 2020, you will still be able to use the NHS. If you are planning to stay in the UK after the 30th of June of 2021, you must apply to the EU Settlement Scheme if you want to keep using the NHS services.


Non-EU students and EU students 2021 onwards


Any student moving to the UK after 2020 will have to apply for the student visa to be eligible to study in the UK. On top of your student visa cost, you will have to also pay the immigration health surcharge, which will allow you to use the NHS for the time you are in the UK.